Illuminate Ramadhan with Lampu Colok Festival

Colok in Malay language means light. Malaysians today often refer colok as “pelite”
or “pelito”. It is a kind of lamp made from tin and uses kerosene as its fuel. Lampu
colok used to be used as traditional lights to illuminate rural villages. Usually it is
made from bamboo or tin. Some are also made from used drinking cans and used as
flashlights.

Along Riau coast in Sumatra, lampu colok is commonly used as light to illuminate the
road when the village people wanted to go outside at night and also functioned
as light for the fishermen’s boats. During the holy month of Ramadhan, Moslems who lives in Riau annually hold a tradition called Lampu Colok Festival. The festival usually starts in the 27th night of Ramadhan and ends on Idl Fitri day.

This tradition has been passed from an early generation of Malay community who lives in Pekanbaru long time ago. The main purpose of Lampu Colok Festival is to light all houses at night when the angel come down to earth on Lailatul Qadr night. Moreover, the tradition also serves as a mean to show gratitude and to welcome the glorious day of Eid.

Today, Lampu Colok Festival has grown into a big and splendid festival. Along with fireworks and other public entertainment, Lampu Colok Festival becomes one of Pekanbaru’s tourist attractions during the holy month of Ramadhan.

Photo credits: antarafoto.com, tribunnews.com

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