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[Photos] Holika Dahan: The Holy flame burns Holika

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Faces glowed in the orange-yellow light of ephemeral flames and bodies absorbed the moderate heat of the burning of myriad Holika effigies in the city when the ritual of Holika-Dahan was performed in the evening today.

As the legend goes, thousands of years ago, an ardent follower of Lord Vishnu, Prahlad was punished by his father, Hiranyakashyap for believing in Vishnu. Holika, aunt of Prahlad, was immune to fire. She sat in huge flames of fire with Prahlad in her lap with a devious motive to burn him to death. But, Prahalad’s divine energy saved him and burnt his aunt instead.

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The story became a custom and now a tradition where an effigy of Holika is burnt every year on the festival of Holi which marks the defeat of arrogance and evil by belief and good.

The tradition is also followed in Udaipur. Holika effigies of various sizes were made and installed at numerous chowrahas in the colonies and main areas of the city. In the evening today, these effigies were burnt after a Puja to mark the festival.

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Photos By: Aayush Devpura

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