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Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Holi Festival in Assam



In the spring season, the festival of colour , Holi is celebrated in almost all parts of India. It is believed by Hindu that lord Shri Krishna played with his beloved devotees with coloured powder of faku in the month of Phagun. From that ritual angle, Holi is celebrated. As India is a place of diverse cultures, the mood of celebration of Holi differs with its own regional tradition.
There is not any clear evidence of celebration of Holi in ancient India. It seems that Mahapurush Sankardeva for the first time introduced this festival after returning from his first pilgrimage in order to propagate the Bhakti cult. Holi is also called as Fakua or Doul Utsav.
In the Barpeta Satra, this festival has been celebrated through ages with pomp and gaiety. On the eve of the festival , Holi Gandha is celebrated by thousands of devotees coming from different places of Assam and outside. In the courtyard in front of the math, the idol of lord Shri Krishna is worshiped by the parmanent priests of the Barpeta Satra. After the worshiping is over, priests bring the idol to a specified Doul. The Idol stay there for three days. When Hasta Nakshatra begins, thousands of devotees accompany to place the idol in the specified place with a great procession. People play with colour powder and sing Holi song with cymbals , drums and other traditional musical instruments. When the idol of the lord approaches the gate of the Kirtan Ghar, the door keeper of 'Lakshmi Devi' closes the gate and gives a strong obstruction to Lord Krishna. A representative of Lord Krishna promises that he would never go to any places leaving Lakshmi Devi alone.
Many other Satras of Assam also follow this tradition. The Doul Yatra or the Holi of Assam was given a new shape and dimension by Mahapurush Sankardeva.

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