Putting politics aside, Maharashtra to come together for Dahi Handi celebrations


After two years of gap due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Dahi Handi celebration are set to resume on Janmashtami this year.

Putting politics aside, the Maharashtrians are looking forward to coming together to celebrate ‘Dahi Handi’ during Janmashtami on August 19. Mandals affiliated with Uddhav Thackeray have no problem in participating in competitions arranged by Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde-led faction.

Soon after the rebellion by Eknath Shinde-led faction last month, individual members of Dahi Handi pathaks and Ganpati mandals flooded social media sites with solidarity messages for former CM Uddhav Thackeray. However, mandals are now happy with Shinde-led government’s decision to remove all restrictions from festivals post Covid-19 pandemic.

“People are eager to resume the sport after two pandemic years, split in Sena ranks will not dampen Dahi Handi celebrations,” said Arun Patil, coach of the Mazgaon Tadwadi mandal and the working president of the Dahi Handi Samanvay Samiti.

Mandals say that they conduct various charitable activities throughout the year and Dahi Handi celebration is an opportunity to get funds.

“We may have personal political leanings, but we do not let that interfere with the sport. There is no political stamp on the festival. Thane has the history of celebrating Dahi Handi in a grand style since the time of Dharmveer Anand Dighe. We have seen now CM of Maharashtra stand at the stage of Dahi handi and celebrate with us for years,” added Patil.

Office bearers of mandals may have different political inclinations, but that doesn’t affect the sport. For Maharashtrians, Dahi handi is a cultural event where multiple ideologies converge.