Gaiety, lucre drive Govindas to reach for dahi handis

The festival of `dahi handi` was being celebrated across Mumbai and neighbouring Thane district amid fervour.

Mumbai: The festival of `dahi handi` was being celebrated across the metropolis and neighbouring Thane district amid fervour that underscores indomitable spirit of an average Mumbaikar shrugging off the drudgery associated with daily life.

Numerous teams of `Govindas` or revellers could be seen on city streets struggling to form a human pyramid to reach the earthen pot filled with curd, dangling from certain height and to break it.

The festival is celebrated to mark birth of Lord Krishna.

With revelry in air and foot-tapping music driving the adrenaline rush, Bollywood celebrities too have let their hair down at the festival.

Actor Shahrukh Khan was seen shaking his leg at the `dahi handi` festival organised by MNS MLA Ram Kadam in Ghatkopar.

A cash reward of Rs 50 lakh has been announced for Govinda mandal which manages to break the pot by forming a nine-layer pyramid.

Similarly, `dahi handi`s with lucrative cash prizes are being organised in Thane, prominent being the one organised by `Sangharsh Mandal` of NCP MLA Jitendra Awhad.

Minister of State for Housing Sachin Ahir has organised the event in suburban Worli.

Not much behind to its opponent to score political mileage, BJP has distributed masks and T-shirts bearing the image of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, to 30,000 Govinda teams, apparently to project him as the party`s prime ministerial candidate.

Women Govindas too are not lagging behind their male counterparts in forming human pyramids as they are seen enduring the challenge with gaiety.

Taking into account the mishaps associated with the festival, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has already announced that it will provide financial assistance to Govindas in case of accident.

The disaster control cell of the BMC said that as many as 99 Govindas were injured in various parts of the city and are treated at hospitals.

Police have beefed up security to prevent any untoward incident.


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