Celebrate Assam Holi – Doul Mahotsav 2024

Barpeta Doul Utsav Holi begins with the sound of Dhol, Nagara, Holigeets, Gayan Bayan, Dola Jatara of Mahaprabhu Krishna for 3 days. In Assam Holi is celebrated as a festival of Heaven (Vaikuntha) at Barpeta Satra. The celebration continues through days and nights at Barpeta with traditions, rituals, singing and dancing. The first time Holi was celebrated by Mathura Das Burha Ata in Barpeta Satra.

barpeta doul utsav holi people dancing singing gayan bayan, assam India
Barpeta Satra Doul Utsav Holi

How is Doul Mahotsav 2024 Celebrated & Rituals ?

Hundreds of devotees gather at the Kirtan Ghar of Barpeta Satra, participate in many traditions with gaiety, sing Holigeets, perform folk dances and carry out Doul and spread colors.

On the first day, called “Gandha or Banhutsava”,  The tradition is people bring reeds, Nal, Khagra, Ekara for ‘Meji’ (bonfire), This ceremony is called “Meji Puoa or Magh Puoa”. Then in the evening hundreds of people gather to watch, there is a display of fireworks and a traditional huge bonfire is lit up. The idols of Mahaprabhu Doul Govinda and Kalia Thakur (or Lord Krishna) are carried out from Manikut Ghar (of Barpeta Satra) and taken to Mathar Chotal (kirtan ghar) with ‘Gayan Bayan’ (means ‘folk singing and dancing’). Then they bring them near the Meji (or bonfire) and take seven rounds (circumambulation or Parikrama) as per the rituals of it. This ritual is also called the ‘Holika Ceremony’.

People are going crazy dancing with beats of drums around the bonfire and folk singing.

Then after, the Mahaprabhu Govinda idols are placed in the Assembly hall (Griha) where people worship and Holigeets sing and dance along with that Doul night. Then later in the night Krishna’s idol (Govinda) is shifted in the Doul building (Satra Verandah). 

Second day is called (Bhor or Bhar Doul) – people (Vaishnavas) perform other rituals, “Naam Prasanga” (like Kirtan, folk singing, Dancing with Khol, Nagara) at Jagmohan Ghar. Many other Folk Dances and competitions of Gayan-Bayan are held on the streets of Barpeta, Ojapali Dance, Dhuliya Nritya or Dance is an unforgettable show performed during Doul Utsav days.

The last day is called “Phakua or Suweri” – On this day, Gods are carried out on decorated Douls (Palanquins or Palkis) on the shoulders of devotees to roam around the Temple. People offer prayers and spread ‘Phaku’ (Pink Colour) on the Douls (Palanquin) of the Gods. Many devotees, tourists and visitors take part in this religious and cultural procession singing Holigeets and dancing.

Then a tradition performed “Bah Bonga Parba”, a story tells, when Mahaprabhu left Mata Lakhsmi and went to Ghunucha’s residence. On his return he was not permitted to enter the premises of Kirtan Ghar and was obstructed by four bhaluka bamboos. Then disciples of Mahaprabhu and Lakshmi join in a power battle, one side to block them and one side to enter the premises. Then the bamboos are crushed during this battle. After breaking bamboo, Mahaprabhu walks around seven times of Kirtan Ghar and finally gains his position inside the Manikut Ghar.

When is Doul Mahotsav 2024 ?

This year Doul Mahotsav 2024 will be celebrated on 25 March 2024 at Barpeta Satra, Guwahati, Assam.

Major Attraction of Doul Utsav 2024

  • Gayan Bayan (Baat Buloni competition – contest of traditional singing and dancing on the streets)
  • Naam Prasanga (tradition of Kirtans with Khol, Nagara, Folk Dances)
  • Holika Ceremony – Traditional Huge Bonfire of Reeds, take rounds.
  • Palanquin or Dola (Palkis of “Radha Krishna”, “Mahaprabhu Doul Govinda”), devotees carry out the procession with people believe that on this palanquin Lord Krishna will go to eat Hekate (a white flower) on the last day (Suweri).
  • Bah Bonga Parba’ Tradition (Bamboo Crashing Ceremony) – Krishna returns to his house with his devotees after visiting Ghunusa, his consort.
  • After this, Palanquin (Doul) or Procession carried out with Mahaprabhu of the Temple with singing and dancing.

How to Reach Barpeta Satra for Doul Utsav ?

Barpeta is well with major cities like Guwahati (around 95 Km away). The nearest airport is Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport, Borjhar, Guwahati, Assam (around 96 Km away). The nearest railway station is Barpeta Road Railway Station (around 21 Km away) from there take a cab or taxi.

Also Read : Mathura Vrindavan – Braj Ki Holi 2024

Also Read : Punjab Holi – Hola Mohalla 2024


Who is Kaliya Thakur worshiped as God in Assam ?

In Assam Vaishnavism legend “Kalia Thakur” is Lord Krishna.

What is Manikut Temple Ghar ?

The sanctum or actual shrine where sacred scriptures or idols of God are placed to worship also called Manikut Temple Ghar.

What is Gayan Bayan in Assamese ?

Gayan Bayan is traditional folk singing and dancing which is played during festivals or sacred events in Assam by Vaishnavites.

What is Meji Puoa or Magh Puoa in Assam ?

Meiji is a lighting up the bonfire with reeds, nal, khagari and ekara on the sacred festivals and events. And the ceremony is called Meji Puoa or Magh Puoa.

What is Naam Prasanga in Assamese?

In Assam, “Naam Prasanga” is like a Kirtan, a tradition performed during sacred months of festivals with Khol, nagara (drums) and folk dances or Nritya like Bhortal, Sattriya, Ojapali folk dance, Bhaona performances.

What is Satra in Assam ?

In Assam, the Satra is a simple Shrine or Temple consisting of a large prayer hall, surrounded by dormitories and bathing tanks for monks. The most important of Satra is NamGhar or Kirtan Ghar (prayer hall or meeting hall where all religious meetings and other village affairs are discussed).

Leave a Comment