The festival of colours was celebrated with enthusiasm in the Yamuna Vihar area of North-East Delhi, an area that was earlier hit by communal riots in February that left at least 53 persons dead and over 200 injured. Sending across the message of brotherhood and compassion, the residents came together to celebrate Holi on Tuesday.
Speaking of the festival of joy, a local resident Vipin told news agency ANI that he celebrates the festival each year with his friend Zahid Hussain who runs a tea shop in the area.
He, however added, "When the violence took place in the area, I was sitting at his tea shop. The celebrations are not in full swing this year because people are disappointed by the violence."
Zahid also said that festive spirit Holi usually brings has been dampened this year due to the Delhi violence. However, Holi is being celebrated in the area. Zahid said that he has been running the shop for four years and shares a special bond with the place.
"It is those negative forces that are inciting violence in the name of religion. Though everyone is celebrating Holi, they are not feeling the same fervour this year due to the recent incidents in the area," Zahid said.
In a bid to avoid any untoward incident during Holi celebrations, security was heightened in several sensitive areas of north-east Delhi.
After riots erupted in North-East Delhi last month, people residing in the violence-affected Maujpur celebrated Holi with complete joy and excitement on Tuesday. Locals of the region also stated that it seemed like the tension in the region has vanished into thin air. Children and elders of the area were spotted shopping for colours from various roadside stalls.
"This year I am selling many more sweets than the last year. From yesterday onwards people are turning up in large numbers at my shop. The sales have gone up by about 35 percent," said Gaurav, a shopkeeper.
Maujpur was one of the localities in North-East Delhi, which witnessed massive communal violence in the last week of February. As a precautionary measure to avoid any communal tension in the communally sensitive areas, the authorities have also formed Aman Committees and Nagrik Suraksha Committees.
(With inputs from ANI)