Festival, 365 days in a year? Yes, in a sarcastic term. Nepal has many festivals. Holi is one of them. Nepalese celebrate it vigorously. There is no any significant ritual in Nepal in the name of Holi festival unlike Dashain and Tihar. People take part in earnest manner to celebrate festival, however. After having morning meal, they begin smearing dry color on each other face with next door neighbor. Later they join at mass celebration places.
The festival, Holi, a great festival among Hindus, has significance. It considers as “festival of fun”, “festival of love”, and “festival of reconcile”. It has many mythical stories which associate with festival. The legendary, symbolic, explanation of Holi festival is a victory of God Vishnu over demon Hiranyakashyapu. Bramha, the god of creation, awards to Hiranyakashyapu being an immortal. To receive this reward the demon goes long devotional rigor.
In Kathmandu, people in morning, around ten, start smear colors, pelting water balloon to others. Some people arm with water guns which filled with colors and water then open fire toward other people. They exchange colors among who knows each other in the beginning. Later on, they exchange colors with strangers too. Some local people pour water over the pedestrians and group of celebrating people.
Also big number of tourists actively involved in celebration as it has full of fun and rejoicing. Locals smear color to tourists by enchanting “Happy Holi”. In return, they exchange colors and repeat same slogan. It is good opportunity to get experience of Hindu culture and festival. They do not want to miss this chance, comes once in year, in Nepal. Taking photos, playing with colors, and having extra fun with local people are additional feed for them.
Some local Youth Clubs organize Holi parties in their neighborhood. There are big festive gathered at Kathmandu Durbar Square and Tundhikhel, an open field near Ratna Park. They play festive music which is Hindi and Nepal including DJ version of western music. Sometimes, local celebrities appear to entertain people with their performance. The participants dance with full of energy, throwing colors and enchanting “Happy Holi”.
There is no any designated time to end festival. However, people get back home earlier or by six after whole day celebration. They better to have relaxed from exhaustion and clean colors which they got from friends and family.
Prior to festive day, some men pelt water balloons to women even school going girls with intention of groping. Some victims file lawsuit again assault and imprison to assaulter. Even on festival day, rowdies throw dirty water and toxic paints to pedestrians in the name of Holi. Some people intake excessive amount of alcohol, marijuana and other illegal substances then go wild. As a result, in some areas the festival changes in to a violation. Throwing colors and water to strangers, without their consent, change in to hatred rather than love. Every year, children lost their life by falling from high roof while playing Holi with friends.
District Administration Office of Kathmandu appeals to people to make safe and enjoyable Holi. No water pelting before festival day, not to throw colors to strangers, no violation and obey traffic rule! However, it seems some people are defying it. They escalate security forces to reduce these problems. Unfortunately, there will be some definite incidences in some corner of city and country.