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Dolothsava is celebrated in West Bengal and it marks the beginning of the spring season. This festival corresponds to the ‘Holi’ festival celebrated in other parts of India.

This occasion celebrates the victory of good over evil. On the eve of this festival, holika (a heap of dry sticks and figs) which represents evil is burned by the people. The burning is accompanied by merry making, dancing and the narration of legends related to this festival.

On the day of the festival, people apply colors on each other. While the colors applied in the morning are usually wet, in the evening only dry powdered colors are used. This exchange of color represents the unity and brotherhood among the people. Special sweets and savories are prepared on this occasion.

At Shantiniketan, the festival is celebrated in a different manner. This occasion is celebrated with music, dance and recital of scriptures in the early morning. Girls belonging to the school in Shantiniketan dress in yellow saris and wear garlands of bright orange ‘palash’ flowers. Boys dress in white along with yellow turbans. Dances are performed accompanied by the famous song composed by Rabindranath Tagore titled ‘Khol Dar Khol’. The Visva Bharati University campus bears a festive and colorful look on this occasion.

Updated on 7th June, 2005

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