Indians celebrate Holi – the festival of colours

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Holi 2024: Indians celebrate festival of colours

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Women smeared in Holi colours in Chennai in southern India's Tamil NaduImage source, Getty Images

Millions of Indians are celebrating Holi, known as the festival of colours, at home and abroad.

The festival celebrates the beginning of spring and the victory of good over evil.

Held on the last full-moon day of the lunar month, the festival sees people smearing bright colours on friends and family and offering prayers.

Devotees perform ''Holika Dahan'' in a village near Gandhinagar, the capital of Gujarat, on March 24, 2024. The village is maintaining its 700-year-old tradition. A Holi fire, towering at 35 feet and built within a 30-meter circumference using 200 tons of wood, is resulting in flames that soar to impressive heights. (Photo by Saurabh Sirohiya/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Image source, Getty Images

Holi is based on the Hindu legend of Holika, a female demon, who tries to kill her nephew Prahlad because he worships the Hindu god Vishnu. But Prahlad miraculously survives the burning fire even as Holika is consumed by the flames.

As part of the festivities, bonfires are lit the evening before Holi in the belief that they will destroy the bad so that good can triumph.

In a village near Gandhinagar, the capital of Gujarat state, a huge bonfire using 200 tons of wood was lit on Sunday night.

Thousands board a train at Patna junction in Bihar to reach their hometowns

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As it’s one of the most widely celebrated festivals in India, millions of people travel to their hometowns and villages in the days leading up to Holi.

Huge processions are held in several parts of the country to mark the festival.

Two women celebrate in southern India's Hyderabad city

Image source, Getty Images

People dance and sing and hold feasts. A public holiday is observed and schools are shut as children and adults devote the day to colourful celebrations.

A boy dripping of colours in southern India's Chennai city

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Children play with water pistols, spraying coloured water on one another.

Children in Amritsar, Punjab playing Holi

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Boisterous celebrations have also been held in the neighbouring country of Nepal.

Nepalese people celebrate Holi in Kathmandu

Image source, Getty Images

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