We bring for you [ #HoliCelebration ] Series in different parts of the country –
Lathmar Holi – Barsana village, Uttar Pradesh
According to myths, Holi began in the Barsana region of India, which includes Vrindavan, Mathura, Nandgaon and Barsana. Interestingly, the festival here is celebrated with not just colors, but with lathis. As per tradition, women chase away the men with lathis. But it’s not a beating session – it’s a crazy one, and the men come prepared too.
Khadi Holi – Kumaon region, Uttarakhand
Khadi holi is played in the Kumaon region that includes mainly towns in Uttrakhand. As a part of the celebration, the locals wear traditional clothes, sing khari songs and dance in groups. They move in tolis, and greet the people they pass by. In this region, holi is usually a musical gathering in different versions known as Baithika Holi, Khadi Holi and Mahila Holi.
Worrior Holi or Hola Mohalla – Punjab
Hola Mohalla, known as the warrior Holi, is celebrated in Punjab. This festival is observed by Nihang Sikhs. They exhibit martial arts, and sing their hearts out on this day, that is usually celebrated a day before Holi.
Fakua – Assam
Like the rest of the country, Holi is also colorfully celebrated by the people of Assam. It just gets more tremendous for the people of Barpeta. In Barpeta , the festival is called “Fakuwa” or “Doul Mahotsav”. It is a festival of happiness. During this festival, the people of Barpeta forget their sorrow and agonies. They celebrate this festival with traditional gaiety and enthusiasm.
Yaosang – Manipur
Yaosang is a festival celebrated in Manipur for five days in spring, starting on the full moon day of the month of Lamda (February–March). Yaosang combines Hindu and indigenous traditions of the Meitei people. It is identified with the festival of Holi and is considered the most important festival in Manipur. Like Holi, the Hindu Meitei of Manipur play with colours during this festival.Yaosang begins just after sunset in every village with the Yaosang Mei thaba , or Burning of the Straw Hut. Then the children ask at every house for monetary donations, called nakatheng . On the second day, groups of local bands perform sankirtan in the Govindagee temple. On the second and third days, girls go to their relatives for their nakatheng and block roads with ropes for collecting money. On the fourth and fifth days, people pour or splash water on one another.
Basant Utsav – Bengal
Rabindranath Tagore was the founder of the Vishwabharati University in Shantiniketan. A town known for its culture and serenity in Bengal. He first introduced Basant Utsav or spring festival in Shantiniketan. Students of this university clad themselves in yellow coloured clothes and celebrate holi in all its prosperity with beautiful musical and dance performances.
Dol Jatra – West Bengal
Dol jatra is a major festival dedicated to Sri Krishna. On this day, an idol of Shri Krishna is adorned with colours and taken out in procession in a swinging palanquin, adorned with flowers, leaves, etc.
Manjal Kuli – Kerala
Down south, holi isn’t as popular as it is in North India. However, some communities in the southern part of the country celebrate Holi, but with distinct traditions and names. In Kerala, Holi is called Manjal Kuli and is celebrated in the Konkani temple of Gosripuram Thirumala.
Shigmo – Goa
Shigmo or Shishirotsava is a spring festival celebrated in the Indian state of Goa, where it is one of the major festivals of the Hindu community. It is also celebrated by Konkani diaspora and Indian festival of Holi is part of it.
In recent years the state government has supported public Shigmo parades consisting of traditional folk and street dancers and elaborately built floats depicting scenes from regional mythology and religious scenes. Meanwhile, Shigmo festivals also continue in various rural parts of Goa, spanning over a fortnight, with different days earmarked for celebrations in different areas. This festival is celebrated around March each year. It is linked to the Hindu lunar calendar, hence its date according to the Gregorian calendar varies.
Phagua – Bihar
The festival of Holi in Bihar is known as Phaguwa in the local Bhojpuri dialect. However, in Bihar, it’s important to light the Holika pyre before playing Holi. After that, Holi is played with folk songs, water and powdered colors derived from natural sources. Consumption of Bhang is also a part of the holi celebrations in the state.
Mahila Holi – Kunmaon region, Uttarakhand
The celebration is similar to ‘Baithaki Holi’ but is exclusively organised for women.It is celebrated by musical performances at local community centres and the songs are based on the life of Lord Krishna. The songs are sung with classical instruments –table and harmonium.
Holi in Andhra Pradesh
It is a well known fact that holi in Southern India is not as grand as that of in Northern India,but in Andhra Pradesh such is not the case. People here celebrate holi with equal vigour. Youngsters play with dry colours and seek elders blessings by putting gulal or abeer on their feet.