New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: Holi is just a few days away but speaking of Braj ki Holi, it has already started off with full-fledged celebrations. Yes, even after the state of Uttar Pradesh is seeing a surge in COVID-19 cases almost everyday, the people were seen playing Holi without keeping the basic guidelines of COVID-19 safety. A large number of people gathered to celebrate the infamous Lathmar Holi in UP's Mathura.

Hundreds of people participated in the celebrations without masks or following social distancing. We have come across a few pictures of Lathmar Holi from Mathura's Barsana town. Take a look

 
 
 
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For the unversed, Lathmar Holi celebrations begin in Braj a week before the actual Holi. This time it started from March 22 as the date of Holi is on March 28 and 29. 

Lathmar Holi is mainly practiced in Shri Krishna janmbhoomi that is nearby the town of Mathura, UP. As per popular Hindu beliefs this tradition is from ancient times where men from Nandagaon (Lord Sri Krishna's place) travel to Barsana which is Radha Rani's home a week ahead of Holi. And when the men visit, women from Barsana are suppose to hit them with sticks. Men usually carry a shield to protect themselves while women beat them with sticks. 

According to the traditions, it is believed that Radha had beaten Lord Sri Krishna with a stick after he and his friends came to play Holi and were drenched in colours. Therefore, as a ritual men reach Barsana to play Holi with women and put colour on them while women then playfully beat them with a lath (stick) to protect themselves. Meanwhile, if the folklore is to be believed Lord Sri Krishna was invited to Barsana and when he accepted the invitation, people in the town played holi with Laddoos.  

Posted By: Sanyukta Baijal