Holi in Goa

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Every place has its own beauty. Just like Goa is famous for its marvellous beaches and beautiful old churches. People of Goa celebrate all the festival in spite of the fact that most of the population in Goa are Christians.  But these people along with Hindu population in Goa celebrate Holi festival just like they together celebrate Christmas. Holi in Goa is famous by the name Shigmo or Sisirotsava as this festival welcomes the spring season. Goa is famous for its beach parties including drumbeats and loud music. In the same manner they celebrate this festival.

Holi is celebrated in the month of March according to the Gregorian calendar referred by the Christians. There are many stories behind the celebration of Holi festival. Holi word is originated from Holika who was the sister of demon king Hiranyakashipu. In some regions, it is celebrated to show their happiness on the death of demon Pootna by Lord Krishna when he was a child. All these stories signify the winter, darkness and win of good over the bad.

In Goa, Holi is the way to exchange colours and sweets among people which helps to strengthen the bond and increases national integration. This festival helps to build new relations, lasting camaraderie and bridge social taboos that are very essential for the growth of nation. Shigmo is celebrated for about one whole month. On this day, one day before the Holi, people gather and light bonfire. They burn twigs and dried leaves. The whole festival includes Holika Dahan Pooja, Dahan, Dhuli vandan and Haldune. People offer yellow or saffron colour to others so that they can play Holi with them.

People of Goa celebrated this Holi festival for about one month in which they perform large number of activities like traditional parade, music, dance, various competitions, cultural dramas, performances by various artists, etc. The first traditional parade is Shigmotsav parade that starts from Ponda. Other parades like Canacona, Sanguem, Churchorem, Quepem, Vasco Shigmotsav, etc are also marched on the other subsequent day. Shigmotsav parade is held for the whole city after one week at places like Mapusa, Pernem,  Bicholim, Sanguellim, Concolim, Valpoi, etc. A Shigmotsav samiti of Panaji also organizes a parade at Panaji. Number of temples in or around Goa makes arrangements for these parades.

People use bright colour powder to play Holi. They also make use of water balloons, washable dyes and dry colours in most of the parts of Goa to play Holi with their friends. They dance, sing and distribute sweets among all. People in Goa are not bound to play Holi in their homes. All the people come out of their homes on the road and smear colours on each other. It is the way of Goa people to celebrate the festival of colours and welcomes the spring season. It is celebrated by all the religion together at one place. They play Holi in the morning and then rest for the whole evening. After the full noise that disturbs the smile and laughter, a silence take place.

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