Holi is said to be one of the most admired and celebrated festivals of India. It is also called the festival of colours.
When is Holi celebrated?
Holi is celebrated in the entire Indian subcontinent in the month of Phalgun.
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Happy Holi 2019 Date: Wed, 20 Mar – Thu, 21 Mar
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Happy Holi 2021 Date: Sun, 28 Mar – Mon, 29 Mar
Why is Holi celebrated?
It symbolize victory of good over evil and is commemorated as a day of spreading love and happiness. The festival is enjoyed as a thanksgiving for a good harvest.
Holi is based on a legend about a demonic King named Hiranyakashipu. He had a son named Prahlad. Prahlad was one of the most prominent devotees of Lord Vishnu. The king wished to murder his son, so he asked his sister for help. Her name was Holika. She had a magic cloak. This cloak possessed the ability to protect the wearer from burning in fire. Hiranyakashipu commanded his sister to sit on a pyre along with his son. He believed that the fire would not injure his sister because of the magic cloak and Prahlad would be burnt to death. But the outcome was different from what the cruel demon king intended.
It is believed that no one can hurt the soul who has God as his saviour. Therefore, Prahlad appeared out of the pyre safely, and Holika got burnt to death. The other day is enjoyed with playful colours to celebrate the victory of goodness and virtue over evil.
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Preparations for Holi in India:
Entire nation wears a joyous look when it is time for Holi celebration. Market places get fully crowded with activity as shoppers begin to prepare for the festival. Piles of various shades of Abeer and Gulaal can be caught sight of on the roads before the festival. Pichkaris in creative and unique design to appear every year to attract the children who love to collect them and to drench everybody in the city.
How is Holi celebrated?
Tremendous enthusiasm is seen in everyone on the next day of Holika Dehen when it is precisely the moment for the play of colours. All the stores and offices remain closed for the day, and people get all the time to get crazy. Glorious colours of Gulaal and Abeer fill the atmosphere, and people take turns in sprinkling coloured water over each other. Children take great pleasure in pouring colours on one another with their “Pichkaris” and shooting water balloons on passers-by.
Lovers also wait to apply Gulaal on their beloved. There is a famous tale behind it. It is said that the naughty and playful Lord Krishna began the trend of playing colours. He applied Gulaal on his beloved Radha to make her like him. Senior citizen and women create groups called “Tolis” and roam around the city. They apply colours and exchange greetings. Dance on the rhythm of dholak, songs and mouthwatering Holi treats are the other highlights of the festival.