UP takes dip in Holi colours

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Lucknow, Mar 22 (UNI) Uttar Pradesh celebrated the festival of colours-Holi-with fun, enthusiasm and spirit of brotherhood.

Singing and dancing, an inseparable part of Holi, was visible across the state with people shaking legs on traditional songs and hit numbers of Bollywood and Bhojpuri films.

Holi revellers were seen throwing coloured water and powders at one another and exchanging 'gujhias'. The festive spirit was high among children, who threw water balloons on passers-by in streets.

A special drink called 'thandai' sometimes containing bhang (Cannabis sativa) was also prepared. Besides, people were seen flocking at temples and paying obeisance to deities.

Even foreigners could not resist playing Holi in temple town Varanasi. They were seen submerging into 'gulal', enjoying 'thandai' and arresting those memorable moments in cameras.

In the state capital, both Hinhus and Muslims participated in a Holi Procession in Chowk area, which was also attended by BJP leader Lalji Tondon.

In Allahabad, people took a spiritual dip in Sangam, the confluence of Ganga, Yamuna, and mythical Sarawati rivers. Children sprinkled gulal and splashed coloured water at one another.

Holi takes place over two days. As per the Hindu calendar, it falls on the Phalgun Purnima (or Pooranmashi, Full Moon).

On the first day (Chhoti Holi) bonfires are lit at night to signify burning the demoness Holika, Hiranyakashipu's sister.

On the second day, known as Dhulhendi, people spend the day throwing colored powder and water at each other.

Rangapanchami occurs a few days later on a Panchami (fifth day of the full moon), marking the end of festivities involving colours.

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