Shunning age-old taboo, widows from Varanasi and Vrindavan played Holi on the premises of the 400-year-old Gopinath Temple on Thursday.
Clad in white saree, a large number of widows gathered at one of the oldest Krishna temples in the crowded Gopinath Bazaar in Vrindavan braving the morning chill and splashed colours on each other.
A large numbers of widows from Varanasi also participated in the event organised by social activist Bindeshwar Pathak, the founder of NGO Sulabh International.
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“Their participation in Holi symbolises a break from tradition which forbids a widow from wearing coloured saree, among many other things,” Pathak said.
1,500 kg ‘gulal’ (coloured powder) and 1,500 kg of petals were arranged for the event, the NGO said in a press release. The NGO has been paying Rs 2,000 to 800 widows living in eight Ashrams in Vrindavan and Varanasi for the last five years, the release added.