Holi celebrations: PMC issues precautionary measures; sales yet to pick up in shops at Mandai
The measures include lighting smaller bonfires, keeping senior citizens and children safe, taking precautions in slums
PUNE The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has released precautionary measures for Holi, which will be celebrated on March 17-18 (Thursday and Friday).
The measures include lighting smaller bonfires in open grounds, keeping senior citizens and children safe, taking extra precautions in slums, keeping water buckets nearby during the burning of the bonfire and taking necessary precautions in housing societies that have gas pipelines among other safety measures.
While the Covid-19 norms have been eased, few residents are sceptical and want to celebrate the festival of colour only with close family and friends.
“I am not sure if I should send my children to play among many people. Agreed that Covid-19 norms are relaxed, but the virus is still present around,” said Renuka Agarwal, a resident of NIBM.
In some housing societies, meanwhile, preparations have begun to celebrate the festival of colours with a bang.
The residents of Saarthi Signor in Hinjewadi are looking forward to a fun-filled Holi. “We have ordered snacks, taken confirmation from the people to attend the event. People have to be double vaccinated and play with minimum contact. We have also organised music events,” said Gaurav Tripathi, a resident of Saarthi Signor in Hinjewadi.
Holi sales yet to pick up in shops
Mandai wore a deserted look with hardly any shoppers buying colours, timki, a round drum and khanjiri. Even the cow dung cakes which are used to burn Holi was lying in heaps at various shops.
“The market is down since Covid-19. We were hoping that this year, we will see soaring sales but still no customers,” said, Vaishali Mahadik, a shopkeeper selling colours and other items at Mandai.
“Even the rates of the items needed for Holi are expensive like earlier cow dung cakes we would get in 1,000s now we have got only 100 and even they are not getting sold at Rs50 for three pieces,” Mahadik said.
Eco-friendly colours in demand
Organic or eco-friendly colours are seeing a rise in sale online. “We have received orders for toxins-free colours, made from 100% natural ingredients, and are skin and environmentally friendly,” said Amit Jain, co-founder, Mitti ke Rang, which is offering herbal colours made by women from villages of Uttarakhand.
Also, Holi parties are planned across the city in resorts and open grounds, but organisers say sales are yet to pick up and organisers feel that the tickets should sale within a day.