Rahads Of Nashik: A Timeless Celebration Of Colour And Tradition

Rahads Of Nashik: A Timeless Celebration Of Colour And Tradition

Rooted deeply in the Peshwa era, Rang Panchami in Nashik is a celebration steeped in tradition. The legacy of the Peshwas comes alive as Rahads, the colourful pits reminiscent of a bygone era, are meticulously prepared across the city. From Tivandha Chowk to Tambat Lane, these historic roads bear witness to a time-honoured tradition that continues to captivate Nashikkars year after year.

Prashant NikaleUpdated: Monday, March 25, 2024, 05:01 PM IST
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Tejal Ghorpade

As the sun rises on the fifth day following Holi, the vibrant city of Nashik prepares itself for a spectacle unlike any other. Amidst the bustling streets and historic lanes, the tradition of Rang Panchami unfolds, weaving together centuries of history and culture into a tapestry of colour and joy.

Rang Panchami in Nashik is more than just a festival; it is a celebration of unity and community. As thousands of Nashikkars come together to partake in the festivities, barriers of caste, creed, and age fade away, replaced by a shared sense of joy and belonging. In the kaleidoscope of colours that envelops the city, there is a reflection of the diversity and resilience that defines Nashik, making Rang Panchami a celebration like no other.

A Peshwa tradition revived

Rooted deeply in the Peshwa era, Rang Panchami in Nashik is a celebration steeped in tradition. The legacy of the Peshwas comes alive as Rahads, the colourful pits reminiscent of a bygone era, are meticulously prepared across the city. From Tivandha Chowk to Tambat Lane, these historic roads bear witness to a time-honoured tradition that continues to captivate Nashikkars year after year. Rahad celebrations take place at Shani Chowk, near Budha Halwai in Tiwandha Chowk, in Old Tambat Lane, Delhi Darwaza near Gadge Maharaj bridge and at Kazipura, Dande Hanuman. Each Rahad has its own tradition, custom and colour. The colour of the Rahad in Shani Chowk in Panchavati is pink. The colour of the Rahad near Gadge Maharaj bridge is yellow. The colour of the Rahad in Tiwandha Chowk is orange.

The magic of Rahads

The heart of Rang Panchami lies within the Rahads, where natural colours concocted from flowers, leaves and traditional ingredients are carefully prepared. Boiled in large pans to form a rich hue, these colours hold a promise of longevity, clinging to the skin of revellers for days to come. As Nashikkars dive into the Rahads with unabashed enthusiasm, they become part of a centuries-old ritual, connecting with their heritage in a vibrant display of community spirit.

A Symphony of senses

The air is filled with the aroma of turmeric and kunku, mingling with the sounds of laughter and music echoing through the streets. As Nashik comes alive with the colours of Rang Panchami, it transcends mere celebration, becoming a sensory experience that touches the soul. From the rhythmic beats of traditional drums to the taste of sugarcane chips buried in the Rahads, every moment is imbued with the essence of tradition and joy.

Preserving the past, embracing the future

Amidst the revelry, there is a deep sense of reverence for tradition and heritage. As Nashikkars honour the water deity with scientific rituals and bury the remnants of Rang Panchami in ancient vessels, they pay homage to their ancestors and the rich tapestry of their culture. Yet, even as they preserve the past, they embrace the future, infusing the age-old tradition with new energy and vitality for generations to come.

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