One killed, 40 hurt in Dahi-Handi revelry in Maharashtra
Mumbai, Aug 10 (IANS) Mumbai and other parts of Maharashtra erupted in a riot of colours and festivity to mark Janmasthami's popular Dahi-Handi celebrations here Friday.
A Govinda fell to his death from atop a human pyramid in Dighi village, Raigad. At least 40 other Govindas, including 22 in Mumbai, were injured in different parts of the state, officials said.
Durvaas Patil, 19, fell from a six-level human pyramid and was killed on the spot at Kudgaon area of Dighi village in Raigad district, police said.
In Mumbai, 300 govinda associations and 60 all-girls teams built tall human pyramids to attempt to grab the pot of butter hanging above. The prize money ran into crores of rupees.
Govinda players make a human pyramid so that one of them can break an earthen pot (a handi) hung high above them. The players are known as Govindas or Bal Gopals. The sport is based on a legend about Lord Krishna stealing makhan (butter) or dahi (curd) from handis.
The celebrations attracted top city and state political personalities like parliamentarians Sanjay Nirupam and Anand Paranjpe and legislators besides Bollywood and Marathi film stars.
Political parties such as the Congress, Nationalist Congress Party, Shiv Sena, Bharatiya Janata Party, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena and various social and cultural groups organised individual or joint Dahi-Handi celebrations across Mumbai. The prize money ranged from Rs.10,000 to Rs.1.10 crore.
Elaborate security arrangements were made by the police to ward off any untoward incidents. Medical teams were present at all venues and hospitals were on high alert.
Unlike the past, Pune celebrated Dahi-Handi only in public grounds and large open spaces.
In Pune, police and the home department had imposed restrictions on any Dahi-Handi celebrations on the roads in the wake of the recent four serial bomb blasts which rocked the city.
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