Indian festivals are popular all around the world. Holi is among one of well-known occasions celebrated with joy during the month of March. This month is also called as the time of Faagun. This is when spring is on its way and winter departs. The surroundings are covered with greenery and flowers having great scent.
Chhattisgarh is in central region of India and covered with forests and greenery. So, the mood of Holifestival in Chhattisgarh is entirely different. Especially when the nature is all set to encourage the celebration. Chhattisgarh is divided into several districts and the people living under these divisions are very down to earth with their own practices and beliefs. They have a simple lifestyle like that of villagers. Hence, they celebrate Holi by keeping all age old rituals in mind.
It is often to see the colours of Holibeing spread in districts of Chhattisgarh including Surguja, Jagdalpur, Raipur, Bilaspur and Durg. All these areas have the tradition of carrying out Holi festival celebration in Chhattisgarh in a two day affair. And the preparation of both the days starts much before the arrival of the day.
They collect the things for the puja that takes place on the first day of Holi. The arrangements contain Chhattisgarhi Jada that is a small tree made to stand in the middle as the Karma Dar. This tree is covered by number of dry wooden branches of other trees and leaves of rice. The structure looks similar to that of a Hut. A puja is performed around this hut, mostly in evening by gathering people around the place in Chhattisgarh.Holi On First Day:
This puja is performed by a Baiga and the puja is for Holika. While all this is going on, the baiga cuts the Chhattisgarhi Jada from the middle with the help of an axe. This happens as soon as the top of dry grass burns off. This Jada tree has a lot of significance to Holi, all the participants of the puja come to grab a piece of it as soon as Baiga cuts a part of it out from the flame. It is believed that taking home of this tree piece keeps the diseases and illness away from the homes.
People celebrate and pay homage by burning the hut, singing songs, dancing and enjoying around it. It takes around 2 to 3 hours for all this to complete. At the end of the ritual, people throw and dry grass in the burnt compound.Holi On Second Day:
The second day is all for the children and youngsters in Chhattisgarh. They are all set from days before with Gulal (a red colour powder) and other dry colours, flower petals, water balloons, Pichkari (a toy used to throw water forcefully upon others) and sweets. Everyone colours each other in these colours and water.
The weather and mood of people in Chhattisgarh is just like flowers. They all forget the fights and bad feelings for other and hug each other happily. The Holi celebration in Chhattisgarh is accompanied with yummy sweets like Gujjia, rasgullas etc.