THT 10 years ago: Holi ‘terror’ grips city-dwellers

Kathmandu, February 28, 2007

The practice of throwing lolas (water-filled balloons) haphazardly at people has given a bad name to the Holi festival, which is celebrated to mark the victory of good over the evil.

Deepak Thangden, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, says the practice of throwing lolas is a transgression that needs to be checked.

According to him, people regularly complain about the situation. “Police have begun nabbing some of those who are engaged in such activities.” “Holi is more of a terror than a festival,” says Anjana Karki of Bagbazaar. “We get hit by water-filled balloons if we venture out of our houses. “The Holi has ruined my life,” she says.

Similar is the plight of others. Many people are injured by lolas. Ritis Maharjan of Satdobato says a lola hit him on Sunday, wrenching his neck and troubling him for two days. Some people throw plastic bags filled with dirt and dirty water at others.

“The government should come up with a policy to check it,” Maharjan says. The legend has it that people started celebrating Holi after Lord Krishna killed Putana, who used to kill children of Gokul. Says Satya Mohan Joshi, a culture expert, “The festival has a long history and holds cultural significance.

Where some think constituent assembly is a ‘great person’!

Whether it is a small tea shop or Chautari, or even a five-star hotel, loktantra, republic and constituent assembly (CA) elections have become hot topics of discussion among people from all walks of life.

The Election Commission is preparing for the upcoming CA polls while the political parties, including the CPN-Maoist, are busy trying to garner public support.

However, the locals of some VDCs across the Rapti river in Banke district are still ignorant of the 19-day-long people’s movement, loktantra, CA polls and republic. Talking to this daily, 75-year-old Liyakat Sai of Narainapur VDC said: “Perhaps, constituent assembly is the name of a great person.

But, I do not know its actual meaning.” Sai said he was familiar with the Maoist insurgency, adding: “Identifying themselves as Maoist cadres, some persons used to come to our houses carrying weapons. So I know about them.

We do not have a radio or television, so we are deprived of all kinds of information.” Sai does not know the name of Nepal’s Prime Minister, too. “I do not know who is the Prime Minister now. But I known this is a former VDC chairman,” said Sai, pointing to nearby-seated former VDC chairman Ajay Shreevastav.

One 35-year-old Chhedan Sai of the same area is also ignorant of the CA, loktantra or republic. “We have no vehicle to reach Nepalgunj. We go to India for shopping also, so we do not know much about Nepal,” he said.