AHIA celebrates Holi

By Subhashini Channa

HOLI, the very word conjures a vivid scenario of colours, joy and friendliness. People spraying multi-coloured water, through ”˜pitchkaris’, balloons, buckets and what not on friends and strangers and ”˜gulal’ fills us with excitement.

Holi augurs spring season, this festivity also symbolises victory of good over evil. As the Hindu mythology goes, the demon Holika and her brother KIng Hiranyakashyap, were killed by Lord Vishnu as Prahlad refused to worship his father King Hiranyakashyap.

Well, AHIA, Australian Hindi Indian Association, celebrated it in a big way on Sunday, March 10, 2019. A huge crowd of members, their families and friends, around 450, gathered at Harvey Lowe Pavillion, Castle Hill. The venue was apt for such a gathering. The turnout was massive indeed but it was very well managed by the AHIA executive members and the volunteers. Everyone was in a spirit of playing Holi, enthusiastic, laughing, smearing gulal, red, yellow, green on one another. What a charged atmosphere it was, the DJ playing favourite Holi dance numbers, Rang Barse being a big hit, and everyone dancing with abandon, forgetting the mundane, oblivious of their tensions and extending a hand of friendship to strangers. For many children it was a first exposure to Indian Holi festival and they had a blast. Among the predominantly Indian crowd, one could spot Australians and Asians who had joined us to celebrate the Festival of Colour, enjoying the vibrant atmosphere, and were thrilled to be there. This showed what Australia is rightly proud of, multi-cultural fabric of the Australian society!

There were food stalls of favourite Indian snacks, golgappas, chaat papri, tiki chhole, which was in abundance and enjoyed by all. People were amazed and delighted that Thandai, a traditional drink made on Holi festival, was also served. Later, delicious lunch was served with freshly made Bhaturas. One could see Mr Ajay, of the famed Maya da Dhaba, personally making them! This is what par excellence service is all about and this kind of personal attention makes him the best in town. Thanks to Maya da Dhaba staff. Once more the DJ music and rhythmic Dhol reverberated in the hall and then began Dandiya dance,

The time and effort in making this celebration a huge success by the AHIA Executive Committee is commendable. Each one of them contributed more than hundred percent. A special mention must be made about exceptionally energetic Ms Sushma Ahluwalia, one of the AHIA executive members, whose untiring efforts took this   event to another level.

Of course, the success of any function depends on the public support, which we found in plenty.      There were pleas to make these celebrations a permanent annual feature of AHIA events!

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