in Western India
Engulfed in the
clouds of varied colors, the people in Rajasthan celebrate holi
with equal fervor. The ground of Jaisalmer?s Mandir Palace
echoes with the folk songs and reverberates with drumbeats.
horsemen attacking each other with color pellets make the
tournaments in Holi a more colorful event.
In Gujarat an
imaginary King is paraded through the village and the villagers
take this opportunity to make fun of the King. Perhaps this was
the only way they could be satirical of the policies of the
rulers. In a way Holi is a festival to make people feel good.
variation of the celebration of Holi is found in this state. The
unmarried girls create images of Goddess Gauri out of the ashes
left by the bonfire of the night before. They create these
images with the wishful thought of marriage.
Holi is celebrated as a social get together. People celebrate it
with fervor. Colored water balloons are thrown at passers by.
Holi is popularly known as Shimga in Maharashtra and is also
referred to as Rangapanchami. The fisherfolk celebrate it in a
large scale. The men and women come together to perform a
special dance called Balya Dance to ward off evil spirits,
thoughts and desires. This dance is accompanied by uttering a
peculiar sound by striking their mouths with the back of their
hands known as Bombne.
There is a very
interesting Holi incident in the Maratha history related to
Shivaji's parents. During the Maratha regime the festival was
celebrated with great fervor. Five-year-old Jijabai, daughter of
Lakhooji Jadhav threw gulal on Shahaji, son of Malajirao Bhosale,.
This was considered as an auspicious event and their engagement
was fixed the very day.
The festival of
Holi is known as Shigmo in Goa. The Panaji Shigmotsav Samiti
organizes a parade in Panaji. Numerous temple festivals around
Goa and special celebrations at Panaji, Mapusa, Vasco Da Gama
and Margao, characterize the festival of Holi.