People of Maharashtra have their own grand style of celebrating
Holi. Besides other things, not to be missed is their mouthwatering
Holi is called Shimga or Rangpanchami
People of Maharashtra commonly know this festival of colours by the name of
Shimga or Rangpanchami. For, the play of colours is reserved for the fifth
The festival is particularly popular amongst the fisher folk. They
celebrate it in on a large scale and revel in the festivities by singing,
dancing and merry-making. This special dance provide them means to release
all their repressed feelings, needs and desires. People also utter sound
through their mouths in a peculiar fashion by striking their mouths with the
back of their hands.
Holi differs from North India in Maharashtra
People of Maharashtra celebrate Holi like the North Indians. Play with
colours is reserved for Rangpanchami,
which comes five days after
Phalgun Poornima. On this day, they make bonfire and effigy of Ogress Holika
is burnt symbolizing the victory of good over evil.
The state also gets its unique Holi flavour with the delicacies such as
Puran Poli. Besides people drink sugarcane juice and feed children with
watermelons that are in season.
Tolis to break the pot
Great excitement is visible in the youth of Maharashtra when it comes to
Holi revelry particularly when it comes to breaking the pot. Trained groups
also called tolis form huge pyramids to break the pot of butter-milk hung
high on the street. Adding to the enthusiasm is the steady flow of colour
water on the men by the womenfolk.
The tradition finds its roots in the legend that the Lord Krishna as a
child was extremely fond of butter milk and used to steal it from an
accessible house in his village.
Historic significance of Holi in Maharashtra
During the Maratha regime this festival was celebrated with great pomp and
grandeur. It was on a Holi festival day that five-year-old Jijabhai,
daughter of Lakhooji Jadhav innocently splashed coloured water and threw
gulal on young Shahaji, son of Malajirao Bhowale. Taking it as an auspicious
event, the two children's engagement was announced that very day. Soon they
were married. Later, Jijabhai gave birth to Shivaji, the founder of great