SCFISociety for the Confluence of Festivals in India

Holi in Gujarat

The vibrant Gujarat reverberates with the chants of the folk song-'Govinda ala re, zara matki sambhal Brijbala..'. People, specially the youth of the state are high on the spirit of the festival. So much energy can be seen amongst the boys and girls of this state as they move in processions 'tolis'. Drenched in coloured waters boys cheerfully warn people to take care of their pots of butter and milk. The tradition has its origin from the legend of Lord Krishna who was known to steal butter and milk from any accessible house in his village.

Crowning of Holi King

The state is famous for the tradition of breaking earthen pot full of buttermilk and tied high on a rope. Hundreds of people participate in forming a human pyramid, in order to reach the pot. At places, there are also prizes for the group which successfully breaks the pot. The person who actually breaks the pot is crowned the 'Holi King' of the locality for the year. Participation of the onlookers is no less. They keep throwing buckets of water on the boys forming the pyramid.

Lighting of bonfire

On the eve of Holi, a bonfire decorated with flowers and fruits is lit with a fire brought from the temple of Mata. People offer raw mangoes, coconut, corn, toys made of sugar, khoya to the 'Holika' and apply tilak on each other and hug their dear ones. Virgins from Gujarat create images of their goddess 'Gauri' out of the ashes left by the bonfire of the night before.

Of course, the next day, called Dhuleti, is reserved for the play of colours.

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