Bhubaneswar: The Holi frenzy gripped Odisha today as people across the state celebrated the festival of colours with enthusiasm and gaiety.
In Bhubaneswar, the streets were filled with Holi revellers who danced in groups while spraying, smearing and throwing colours at each other.
The campuses of residential educational institutions across the city came alive with students losing themselves in gay abandon amidst the riot of colours and loud music.
In the residential areas, women were found moving in groups and visiting every other house in their neighbourhood.
Holi has been referred in the puranic texts as Basantotsaba or the spring-festival. Some scriptures testify that the Madanotsaba, the festival held in honour of Madana or the Cupid was later transformed as the Dolatsaba or swing-festival of Krishna. Therefore, Krishna is propitiated on this occasion as Madana Mohana.
Though the festival of Holi is observed for a day with mirth and merriment all over the country, the festival is celebrated for five days in Odisha. It starts from the tenth day of the bright fortnight of the month of Phalguna known as Fagu Dashami.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted people of nation on this occasion of Holi.
होली के पावन पर्व की सभी देशवासियों को ढेरों शुभकामनाएं।
Wishing everyone a Happy Holi!
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 2, 2018
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik wished the people of Odisha on the occasion of Holi.
Heartiest greetings to all on Holi. May the festival of colours fill our lives with happiness, peace and prosperity. #HappyHoli
ହୋଲିର ଶୁଭେଚ୍ଛା ଓ ଅଭିନନ୍ଦନ। ଆନନ୍ଦର ସହ ଉତ୍ସବ ମନାନ୍ତୁ, ସୁରକ୍ଷିତ ହୋଇ ହୋଲି ଖେଳନ୍ତୁ। ସମସ୍ତଙ୍କ ଜୀବନ ସୁଖ ଏବଂ ସମୃଦ୍ଧିର ରଙ୍ଗରେ ଭରିଯାଉ। pic.twitter.com/KBBg8cgHX9
— Naveen Patnaik (@Naveen_Odisha) March 2, 2018
However, Patnaik skipped Holi celebrations this year owing to cold.
On the other hand, the Twin City Commissionerate police geared up to put a check on the sale of harmful chemical colours in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack. Special teams were formed to conduct surprise raids on various shops selling such colours.
Special drives were launched in a bid to prevent incidents of eve-teasing and drunken driving during Holi celebrations. Fire personnel and ODRAF teams were deployed at different ghats to prevent drowning incidents.