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India celebrates August 25 as ‘Dahi Handi’: Find out its significance in Hinduism!

The famous Dahi Handi celebration is also known as Gopalakala, in Maharashtra, and is based on this tale of Lord Krishna

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Dahi Handi. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Kolkata, August 25, 2016: Commemorating the birth of Lord Krishna, the eighth incarnation of Lord Vishnu- Indians, particularly from Maharashtra and parts of Goa, celebrates Dahi Handi (Dahi means ‘curd’, Handi means ‘earthen pot’) with a lot of gusto and enthusiasm every year, that falls on the next day or on the same day of Krishna Janmashtami or Gokulashtami, in the month of August/ September.

We all are acquainted with the bhajans like “Maiya mori, mein nehi makhan khao”, “Yashoda ka mohan, makhan chor”, “Makhan ki chori, nandalal kare” and the tales of the little Lord Krishna, that how much he had love for dahi (curd) and makhan (butter), and the notorious means of getting them.

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Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Lord Krishna. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

The famous Dahi Handi celebration is also known as Gopalakala, in Maharashtra, and is based on this tale of Lord Krishna. This is a one-day event, on which the young troop of boys, make a human pyramid, to fetch the Handi which is filled with milk, curd, butter, fruits and water.

To make this more challenging, these Handis are kept several feet high, and the women folks, who assume the role of female cowherds from the story of Lord Krishna, prevent the boy troop from fetching the Handi, by throwing water on the pyramid formation, while the other spectators sing in Marathi, “Ala re ala, Govida ala”, which means, Govinda or the participants have arrived.

Though the real story behind celebrating Dahi Handi, is the mischievous acts of Lord Krishna, there is also a philosophical significance attached to it.

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We, the people, are being held back by dangles of Samsara, unable to open ourselves. The pot is believed to be the ‘human ego’ and the content of it is the ‘being’. Lord Krishna breaks the pot and releases the content from the binding of the Samsara. In this way, he reveals the real bliss of life introducing the true self.

So let’s get ready to enjoy and flourish ourselves with the blessings of Lord Krishna, on this year’s Dahi Handi, keeping in mind its significance, and by discovering our true self!

– by Riashe Chakraborty of NewsGram. Twitter:@itzriashe

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The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater -- 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater -- 12 per cent of the global total.

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Global groundwater depletion - where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally - increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India's rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period. Pixabay

As many as one billion people in India live in areas of physical water scarcity, of which 600 million are in areas of high to extreme water stress, according to a new report.

Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid.

This number is expected to go up to five billion by 2050, said the report titled “Beneath the Surface: The State of the World’s Water 2019”, released to mark World Water Day on March 22.

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Pure water droplet. Pixabay

Physical water scarcity is getting worse, exacerbated by growing demand on water resources and and by climate and population changes.

By 2040 it is predicted that 33 countries are likely to face extremely high water stress – including 15 in the Middle East, most of Northern Africa, Pakistan, Turkey, Afghanistan and Spain. Many – including India, China, Southern Africa, USA and Australia – will face high water stress.

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Globally, close to four billion people live in water-scarce areas, where, for at least part of the year, demand exceeds supply, said the report by non-profit organisation WaterAid. Pixabay

Global groundwater depletion – where the amount of water taken from aquifers exceeds the amount that is restored naturally – increased by 22 per cent between 2000 and 2010, said the report, adding that India’s rate of groundwater depletion increased by 23 per cent during the same period.

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The report also highlighted that India uses the largest amount of groundwater — 24 per cent of the global total and the country is the third largest exporter of groundwater — 12 per cent of the global total.

The WaterAid report warned that food and clothing imported by wealthy Western countries are making it harder for many poor and marginalised communities to get a daily clean water supply as high-income countries buy products with considerable “water footprints” – the amount of water used in production — from water-scarce countries. (IANS)