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Visually-challenged celebrate festival of colours

Staff Reporter
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FUN TIME:Inmates of Odisha Service Centre for the Blind celebrating Holi in Berhampur on Thursday.— PHOTO: LINGARAJ PANDA
FUN TIME:Inmates of Odisha Service Centre for the Blind celebrating Holi in Berhampur on Thursday.— PHOTO: LINGARAJ PANDA

Visually impaired students of the residential school for blind girls in Gosaninugaon area of the city celebrated Holi, the festival of colours, on their campus on Thursday.

The celebration was organised by Odisha State Service Centre for the Blind (OSCB), the organisation that manages the institute. Bhabani Shankar Padhi, secretary of the OSCB, said they decided to celebrate Holi on the campus to make the visually impaired girls feel that they were no way detached from the celebrations of the society around them.

Members of philanthropic organisations reached the campus of the school for the blind to celebrate Holi and share joy with the visually impaired children. All the students, staff, and teachers of the school got together to play with colours. Although distinction of colours was not possible for these children and some of their visually impaired teachers, yet there was no dearth of enjoyment in the Holi celebration.

The children used gulal of different colours as well as coloured water to colour up each other. The children enjoyed pouring coloured water on one another.

Traditional delicacies of Odisha ‘pitha’ of different varieties were prepared for the Holi celebrations. Apart from it there was ‘dahi vada’ and ‘alu dum’, the two delicacies which are always attached to Holi festivities in the State. After playing with colours the children sat down for a session of song and dance. They sang devotional songs and also played ‘antyakshari’. Kuni, a student of the school, said observing the festival in school made her feel that she was no different from other students. As per the students, most of them were not allowed to play Holi while they were at home because of their protective parents. Here also the school authorities were too protective. They were near the students at each step when they were playing with dry and wet colours.

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