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Geendar Utsav in Momasar: Celebrating Rajasthan in all its colors

Momasar, a nondescript 500-year-old village 250 km north-west of Jaipur and barely 125 km from district headquarter Bikaner, in Rajasthan, plays the ubiquitous host to a unique, fun-filled celebration, Geendar Utsav, just days before Holi.

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When we think of Holi, we think of colors, water sprinklers, water balloons and meeting and greeting friends, acquaintances over gujia, bhang and thandai. When we think of a celebration, we know only of the famous Holi celebration of Barsana in Uttar Pradesh. But away from the hustle-bustle of the city, Momasar, a nondescript 500-year-old village 250 km north-west of Jaipur and barely 125 km from district headquarter Bikaner, in Rajasthan, plays the ubiquitous host to a unique, fun-filled celebration, Geendar Utsav, just days before Holi.

It is quite a sight when characters from mythology, comics, politics, and history come together and dance in gay abandon to the beat of dhap and chang. To witness this, head to Momasar - a tiny village in Churu district of Rajasthan - on Holi.

At first sight, most of the dancers moving in a circle appear to be women; but on closer look, each one of them is a man. The Geendar dancers are dressed in every attire ranging from a lehenga to a mini skirt and their exquisite moves can put the finest dancers to shame.

Geendar is a traditional dance that is performed in a circle. The dancers carry large sticks that they tap with each other as they move. The music is by traditional musical instruments dhap and chang. Geendar begins after sunset and reaches a crescendo at midnight.

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