New Delhi: Mention Holi and images of painted faces of youths, women beating men during ‘lath mar’ holi crop up in one’s mind. Holi gives different heights to the deity-devout relation and the celebrations have more to do with flowers.

Holi, a Braj festival with Sri Krishna and Radha being the focal point, also offers a chance to get engrossed into the devotion of the Lord.  And if you are missing being part of the traditional Holi celebrations at Vridavan and Barsana, don’t be upset. This time you can experience the same fest in your own town.

With a divine-cum-festive environment paramount over the city, the ISKCON is offering an opportunity to the people to celebrate the spirit of colourful festival with their deity, quite similar to the one played in 'Vrindavan'. The ISKCON temple in the Capital is organizing the Holi with the same enthusiasm and spirit as is celebrated in the town of Lord Krishna.

Talking exclusively to Jagran Post on the eve of Holi, Vice President of ISKCON (International Society For Krishna Consciousness), New Delhi, Vrijnandan Das briefed about the programmes being conducted on the occasion of Holi.

The preparations are in full swing at the ISKCON and will begin with the mangal aarti in the wee hours on March 27 followed by other variants rituals like the decorations of the lord Krishna idols. After the ‘Maha-abhishek’ to lord Krishna, ‘Chhappan Bhoj’- made of 56 ingredients will be offered to the lord.  The ‘yatra’ after the ‘shringaar’ would be a not-to-be-missed part of the celebrations.  The devotees will transcend to another level of spirituality and devotion as they will sing, clap and dance in harmony while the priests will carry out religious rites.

Talking to him, we found out that people of all ages gather to feel the real touch of tradition. “Last year, the IIT Delhi students joined the Holi celebrations with full enthusiasm as they celebrated the festival with colours, flowers and water. This time also we are expecting their presence”, said Vrijnandan Das.

All other variant programmes like kirtan, colours play, drama depicting mythological epics will be presented in the huge pandal in the temple premises.  For the very first time we are organizing a whole night programme which will be joined by eminent gurus, society members and other devotees. It will end on the other day with fresh Mangal Aarti, said Das.

On being asked about the decision of widows playing  Holi in Vrindavan this time, he replied that the Lord Krishna never discriminated people on any grounds and  breaking all the shackles traditions will bring the positivity in the society and we all should follow it peacefully.

Vrijnandan Das whole heartedly invited all the devotees to celebrate the festival of colours and urged all to eradicate the feeling of jealousy and enemity from the hearts.

Those who really want to be a part of that joyful and ‘pawan’ Holi, here is a chance for you to celebrate the Holi in Lord Krishna style in the Capital itself.

(Anita Raj/JPN)