Story by Fran Belbin | Photo by Nico Hall
Outside may have been covered with snow and ice, but inside the Hindu Samaj on Buckenham Street was a riot of colour as Hindus from across South Yorkshire came together for the annual celebration of Holi.
Mr Bhushan explained the tradition behind the festival of colours.
“In Hinduism, during the era when Lord Vishnu reincarnates as Narasimha, an evil king ordered his people to worship him instead of Vishnu. But his son remained a devotee of Vishnu, and the king ordered him to be killed.
“The King’s sister Holika could not be burned by fire, and she suggested the king kill his son by sitting him in her lap and burning them both, so she would be safe. But because she misused her boon, she was burned and the son survived.
“The lighting of the Holi flame represents this fire, and on the next day we celebrate the son being saved and the victory of good over evil. Holi also marks the start of the spring festival.”
Darnall councillor Zahira Naz joined the celebrations, which involve covering one another with multi-coloured powder paints, particularly popular amongst the children! Animish told us that in India the children also spray each other with coloured water using super soakers, “but it’s too cold here!”