Holi hues

Zestful celebration.

Zestful celebration.  

IF HOLI can't unite them, nothing can. So colourful and binding is this festival that the people from North India can look forward to no better occasion to come together with a warm embrace.

Though small in number, the North Indian community members in Kochi did celebrate Holi on Friday with a splurge of colours, breathing an atmosphere of social merriment.

The festival heralds spring _ summer in our case. Certainly the days ahead are sunnier and hotter. This prospect, as well as the recent communal carnage in Gujarat, did not dampen the spirits of the revellers in Kochi.

The members of the community, young and old alike, gathered at the Rajeev Gandhi Indoor Stadium and Durbar Hall grounds on Holi eve, singing, dancing and throwing coloured powder on each other. They did `Holika dahen' or the burning of the demoness called Holika. It is believed that burning of Holika — a celebration of the triumph of good over evil — will purge the people of their sins.

Women and children danced around the fire on Thursday night, playing with gulal or dry colour powder. The participation of the District Collector, Gyanesh Kumar, gave the celebrants a real pep.

There were special dishes made for the occasion, like Dahi Vada, Mal Pua, Batura, Pani Puri, Bhel Puri and Pav Bhaji.

If the celebrants confined themselves to dry colours on Thursday, the next day turned out to be reserved for merry-making with water. Waters of all hues were sprayed on each other's body. However, sensing the South Indian attitude to Holi, the celebration did not spill out of the confines of the community.

The colour, noise and entertainment that accompanied the celebration bore witness to a feeling of oneness.

By Abdul Latheef Naha Photo: H. Vibhu

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