Dahi handi celebrations cancelled, mandals aid Covid warriors instead
Prominent mandals are going to celebrate the Dahi Handi by donating prize money for the Covid related worksUpdated: Aug 12, 2020 17:59 IST
In the past four months, several festivals have been celebrated quietly in a low-key manner due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, however, Dahi handi which was scheduled to be celebrated today has suffered this year, given the huge spectacle of the festival.
The Dahi Handi mandals in Pune are well known for their grand celebrations with celebrities, huge prize money and the reward given to the team who breaks the handi for its grand decoration sets.
This year all of these things don’t exist and several prominent mandals are going to celebrate the Dahi Handi by donating prize money for the Covid related works.
Balasaheb Marne president of Hutatma Babu Genu mandal trust which is one of Pune’s biggest Dahi Handi mandal said, “This year we have cancelled the Dahi Handi celebrations as the Covid pandemic has affected all of us. Every year we give away prize money of Rs 3 to 5 lakh during Dahi Handi, for which we do not take any public contributions (Vargani). This year the mandal is going to donate the same prize money to several government agencies who are fighting against this disease and for a social cause.”
The Khajina Vihir Tarun mandal in Sadashiv peth is working on similar lines. Om Kasar, president of the mandal said, “Our mandal every year celebrates the Dahi Handi in grand style with huge decorations and sound system. Teams from Mumbai, Thane, Chiplun, Baramati and Pune come to break the Dahi handi at our mandal and more than Rs 1 lakh prize money is given. This year there is no Dahi Handi celebrations instead we are going to provide meals to sex workers in Budhwar peth and will distribute 5,000 face masks and sanitizers to citizens in Sadashiv peth area.”
Another prominent Dahi Handi mandal, the Suvarnyug Tarun mandal has also cancelled the Dahi Handi this year.
Prakash Chavan, president of Suvarnayug Tarun mandal said, “As the Covid situation is rising in Pune city and several government agencies are working to fight against it we are going to donate medical equipment to them. An amount of Rs 1.25 lakh will be used to purchase the medical equipment and it will be handed over to the Pune district administration.”