Shades of merriment

Shades of merriment

HOLI HAI !

Shades of merriment

The spirit of the festival is infectious.

It may not be celebrated with the same fervour in South India, but Holi is one festival that sees everyone douse their sorrow in colours and become one with the spirit of happiness. Being a multi-cultural city, Bangalore sees people of various communities get together every year to celebrate Holi. Metrolife speaks to a few people in the City, who celebrate the festival of colours every year.

Rashmi Jiandani, a homemaker, organises a party for her children and their non-Hindu friends every year. “My kids play Holi in our open terrace with their friends,” she says. There is a small water balloon fight followed by the usual pichkaris of colours. “It starts from 10 am and goes on till 3 pm,” she explains. “It’s lunch time by then so they all wash up and have a sumptuous lunch.”

Rashmi prepares Sindhi food specialities like Dal Pakkani, which is a chaat item. “It consists of stiff ‘puris’ and ‘dal’ with sweet and sour chutney. I also get ghiyan from the sweet shops. It is a Sindhi sweet, which is like a jalebi.” 

Speaking of the bonfire or holika dehan that takes place a day before the festival, she says, “When we were kids, we would collect junk for about a week to burn it on the day before Holi. It happens only in a few localities in the City now.” 

Preeti Dugar, who runs a fitness studio for women, loves going for Holi parties. “It’s a festival of colours and it’s the season of harvest.” She adds, “The day before Holi, there is a bonfire and people do ‘pooja’ and offer grains. They put colour on each other.” 

About the traditions followed by Marwaris, she says, “Holi is a family get-together. And if there is a new bride in the house, she is made to play Holi with her brother-in-law (husband’s brother),” says Preeti. “We make ‘jalebies’, sweet rice, ‘gatte ki khichdi’, ‘malpua’ and ‘rabdi’. ‘Thandai’, which is a drink made from milk and poppy seeds, is really popular too,” she explains. 

Vandana Arya along with her family.And how can one forget the intoxicating ‘bhang’, which is mixed in beverages during Holi? “Yes, ‘bhang’ can be added but since it gives one a high, many people avoid it.”

Vandana Arya, along with her sons, throws one of the biggest Holi bashes in the City every year. Her parties are Bollywood-style in nature consisting of a DJ and rain dance. “We have been throwing parties for four years now,” says the lady, who is planning to throw a Holi bash this year at a farmhouse on Bannerghatta Road.

“On the day of the festival, we eat the cold food from the previous night as part of tradition. There is no particular reason behind it. The day before Holi is the day of the bonfire.”

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