From Kerala to Manipur to Odisha — how the spirit of Holi is enjoyed

Rang Panchami | Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh


The Rang Panchmi Ger procession is one of the main highlights of Holi in Madhya Pradesh

Rang Panchami is a well-known festival that continues five days post-Holi and is celebrated in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh as well as other parts of India. Rang Panchami symbolizes victory over the Hindu philosophies of Rajas and Tamas, that are present in human beings, as well as the purification of the surroundings. In Madhya Pradesh, the centerpiece of the attraction is the Rang Panchmi Ger — a colossal procession that passes through the streets of the capital Indore. Last year, more than six lakh took part in the annual Ger.

Yaosang | Manipur


This five-day celebration is a blend of Hindu and Manipuri traditions, specifically those of the Meitei group. People mark the day of Holi with colors, music, and dance, but what sets Yaosang apart is the integration of a traditional dance form known as Thabal Chongba, where men and women dance together in circles. This is observed along with other practices that take place during the five days leading up to Holi. A number of sports competitions also form a part of it, with the young and old participating in tug of war, soccer and other activities.

Dola Jatra/Doul Yatra | Odisha and Assam


Devotees of Lord Jagannath take part in Dol Jatra in Odisha

In Odisha, people dedicate themselves to Lord Jagannath, a form of Lord Krishna, during Dola Jatra or Dola Purnima which falls on the day of Holi. While in Assam, people mark the occasion with the Satras of Barpeta which involves carrying the image of Lord Krishna seven times around the holy fire. Multiple processions are seen across both the states celebrating the deity who is also known as Dolagobinda of Dola Govinda. People across the state step out of their homes to come together and spread festive joy and love by applying gulaal to each other, remembering that Lord Jagannath reigns supreme and protects everyone who worships Him.

Basant Utsav and Dol Jatra | West Bengal

In Bengal, Basant Utsav is, as the name suggests, a celebration of the arrival of spring. A spectacular event is planned in Shantiniketan. A part of the main Holi celebrations is the Dol Jatra. Idols of Radha and Krishna are paraded through the streets of Purnima. Men sprinkle water and colors during the parade to add to the joy.

Meduru Holi | Andhra Pradesh

In the southern state of Andhra Pradesh, Holi is celebrated as ‘Meduru Holi’. People take part in processions in which colored powder is thrown at each other, along with traditional music and dance. Another notable custom is the singing of devotional hymns to Lord Krishna.

Ukuli or Manjal Kuli | Kerala


In the southern region of India, if one is looking to celebrate Holi, then experiencing Ukuli or Manjal Kuli (turmeric bath) in Kerala is a must. This version of the festivities is primarily celebrated by the Kudumbi and Konkani communities. Melodious music, dance and natural colors such as turmeric mark this auspicious day, where people chant and sing praises of Lord Krishna. The well-known boat races are organised creating excitement and anticipation among the people of the communities.

Images courtesy of X@AmbShrivastava,, and Flickr

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