The Indian Action Committee (IAC) extends Phagwah (Holi) greetings to all the citizens of Guyana, especially those who are guided by the philosophical teachings of Sanatan Dharma.
Phagwah or Holi is a festival of Bharat (India) that has its roots in antiquity and celebrates the coming of a new spring season, the dawning of a new year, and the triumph of good over evil. The exuberance of this festival reflects the collective hope of people for progress, prosperity and the concomitant betterment of their lives.
This festival of renewal most likely pre-dated the Sarasvati Valley Civilisation, the world’s first significant civilization which existed between 5000 BCE and 2600 BCE.
Even though the cultural landscape in Bharat had changed from time to time from the introduction of the Negroids followed by the Proto- Australoids, Dravidians, Mongoloids, Caucasians, Persians, Greeks, Shakas, Kushanas, Huns, Arabs, Turks, Afghans, Mughals and Europeans, the festival of Holi emerged, survived and flourished in Bharat, the world’s first melting pot.
Holi was brought to British Guiana by Hindus who arrived here as indentured labourers to work on sugar plantations 180 years ago and was sustained by the descendants of the majority of approximately 239,000 Bharatiyas who arrived on these shores between 1838 and 1917.
Phagwah was transplanted from a large sub-continent, characterized by the four seasons of spring, summer, autumn and winter, to Guyana, a small South American land of dry and rainy seasons, and even though global warming is creating climatic havoc, the symbolism of Holi must not be lost.
The IAC, therefore, calls upon all Guyanese to regard the great festival of Phagwah or Holi, which celebrates life regardless of demography or geography, and always as a focus for a unified nation.