Holi- the festival of colours, vibrance, joy, cheers- everything. I am sure the festival has always been a kid’s favourite. But three years ago, my whole perception of celebrating the playful festival was shattered. Since that Holi, I have barely imagined myself stepping out of my home on the day of Holi.
I remember how my colourful Holi became a nightmare just in a few minutes. Few years ago, when I was a kid, I would wait for Holi to come so that I get an excuse to flash all those fancy new goodies that my dad would bring me but now the thought of colors just gives me a cringe.
I had gone out of my colony to another friend’s place. The streets were all crowded so we decided to have our share of the playful chirpy holi on her terrace only. A few hours were spent well and then around 3 PM we planned to head back. We gauged the mood outside and when we felt it is safe enough to leave, we rushed to the parking lot where the car was parked. As soon as we stepped out of the building we were stopped by three bikes. A group of seven guys, tall, heavy built, smeared in color and grease, got down. I can’t recall the faces but I can’t forget the nasty intentions that their face was reflecting all the while. We were just three…now scared to death inside. We tried to pace up but before we could shoo away our pangs of terror, they had already grabbed our arms saying, “Holi hai madam, thora rang toh lagva lo”
One of them grabbed a friend of mine from behind, spurting color all over on her face. While I was about to stop him, another one of them smashed two eggs right on my head and face. The other friend was 3 years younger to me. She was already in tears and could do nothing but just sip in the rage helplessly. We could not find our way away from them and they took a good chance of the whole situation. The street was empty hence no one could even come to help us get rid of those perverts. They tried every bit to touch us here and there in the name of ‘holi’. We were repeatedly bombarded with eggs and balloons. Some of the color even got inside my mouth and I was choked. We were coughing incessantly while they were relentlessly enjoying the whole scenario torturing us. We struggled for over 20 minutes, tried to stop them, tried to get away, tried to even hold one’s arms but all in vain. After they left, we could not move a bit. The car was just across the road but what had happened to us had left us dead for another few minutes.
This was my Holi, three years ago and I still can’t think of reclaiming the Holi spirit ever in my life again in near future. A 23 year old girl still fears a group of hideous guys approaching her in the name of Holi. As I have observed in the past few years, there are numerous such incidents on Holi where the drunk nasty bastards don’t leave any chance to thrust their lust on girls. Their out of control sex drive gets an outlet on such occasions, especially after the perverts are all sunk in the flavours of Bhang and drinks. Women are very easily subjected to petty lewd comments and ‘Bura na mano, Holi hai’ becomes the most justifiable excuse for them to molest us. Now the situation is that with such rising cases, a girl would think twice before stepping out on Holi, let alone celebrating it with her friends. I can’t figure out how such crude happenings take no time to become a part of the so called ‘festivities’. The countless incidents are a proof of how perverts are always hunting for such opportunities and how girls are forced to feel weak mere at the thought of these smutty incidents.
Can’t men be considerate enough to give an equal share to women in this world full of threat and fear?