Dola Purnima – The festival of colours
Popularly known as Holi, the festival is celebrated by every household in the locality, where people greet each other with a splash of colours and sweets.
Apart from the revelry associated with Holi, the day also happens to be the birth anniversary of great Vaishanava Saint Chaintanya Mahaprabhu.
Traditionally, this festival begins on PhaguDasami, wherein idols of Lord Krishna is carried on a palanquin to every household in the locality, and culminates on the day of Dola Purnima when people apply colours to one another and revel in the festive atmosphere.
Lord Jagannath adorn the ChacheriBesa, a red dress along with red flowers symbolizing that the Lord is ready to partake in the Holi celebrations. During these five days, starting from the PhaguDasami to DolaPurnima, devotees throw Gulal on to Lord Jagannath.
The victory of Lord Vishnu on mythological devil Hiranyakashyap’s sister Holika is also observed at the Jagannath temple in Puri. The last day is kept aside to observe the ritual of Holika daahan (cremation of Holika) in the Jagannath temple premises.
One of the highlight of the festival is the Palanquins get together (Milana in Odia) accompanied by devotional music.