Those who have not seen Holi of Braj have not seen India

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Holi, the festival of colours, is played in most of India for one day ( this year it will be on 25th March ).

Justice Katju Urges Joint Holi Celebrations in Pakistan and Bangladesh

But in Braj Mandal ( the area around Mathura city ( comprising of Mathura, Gokul, Vrindavan, Govardhan, Barsana, Nandgaon, etc ) ) it is played for one full week, commencing from Holi Day.

I believe that one who has not seen Braj ki Holi has not seen India

Throughout the week, commencing from Holi day, Braj Mandal is full of colours everywhere. Skits are performed in several places showing Lord Krishna’s life and ‘raas leela’ i.e. dalliance with the gopis ( girls ) of Vrindavan, and especially with his beloved Radha.

On the first day of the week, i.e. Holi day ( which will be this year tomorrow, 25th March ) there will be ‘lathmaar Holi’ at Barsaana, a place about 40 kms from Mathura city. There is a famous Radha temple in Barsaana on a small hill, which I have visited. There women of 80, girls of 5, and females of all ages in between, can be seen dancing all the time.

In Barsaana people do not say ‘Jai Shri Krishna’ as is said elsewhere, but ‘Radhe Radhe’. That is because they believe that Krishna deserted them when he was attacked by Jarasandh and fled to Dwarka in Gujarat, but Radha remained with them.

On this day boys of Nandgaon, which is about 7-8 kms from Barsaana ( and where it is believed Krishna had spent part of his childhood ) march all the way to Barsaana, where the womenfolk beat the former on their heads ( probably symbolising their anger at Krishna who had deserted their Radha ). The boys have to wear protective headgear, else they may be seriously injured, so fierce is the beating.

The last day of the Holi week in Braj is ‘Dauji ka Huranga’. Dauji is Balaram, the elder brother of Lord Krishna, and there is his temple situated about 30 kms from Mathura where this event takes place. There is a square courtyard there surrounded by buildings, filled with 1 or 2 feet coloured water. On this occasion the womenfolk tear off the upper garments of the menfolk there, dip them in the coloured water, and then beat the menfolk with those torn clothes ( probably symbolising getting back at the ill treatment they got from their menfolk for 364 days in the year ). In the meantime colour is flying around everywhere in the air.

I have appealed to Pakistanis and Bangladeshis to also play Holi

For seeing more videos of Brij ki Holi, Lathmaar Holi, Dauji ka Huranga, etc see on youtube

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