India’s first Zero-Waste Natural Holi celebrated in Mumbai


UFC organized Holi using natural ingredients that were natural and bio-degradable, that left the skin  fresh and radiant the next day.   21 March 2019, Mumbai: Animal rights activist group, United For Compassion UFC), organized a zero-waste Holi party at Mumbai’s first vegan store, Rare Earth, Khar, Mumbai on 21 March 2019. The organizers arranged for natural colours sourced from beet, papaya peels, tomatoes, multani matti, corn flour (besan), coriander leaves and so on to play Holi. The festival used minimal water and ensured that there was no wastage of materials at the end of the festival.

Unique Concept

The unique event was conceptualized by UFC activist and yoga instructor, Nikita Solanki, to convey a strong message to people across India to celebrate Holi naturally without harming our skin and the environment as well. The event eliminated the use of organic or chemical colours. Nikita Solanki stated, “If we celebrate Holi in this unique manner, we can set an example to other people to follow the same environment-conscious principles in their own way for not only Holi, but other festivals as well.”  

Green Holi

UFC advocates for the celebration of a cruelty-free Holi so that innocent animals like stray animals, farm animals and local birds are not teased or ill-treated. Shweta Savla, Head of UFC stated, “Many people have not yet understood that animals do not enjoy Holi. Often people throw colours on stray dogs and cows and the chemicals in the colours can harm these innocent creatures and damage their eyes. Dogs and cats often lick themselves and if the chemicals are ingested, the effects are dangerous and can even be fatal.”  

India’s First  Plastic-Free & Zero-Waste Festival

Special efforts were made by the organizers to source the natural colours for festival. Dhruv Solanki, one of the core-members of UFC said, “We sourced vegetables and fruits from the local market at very economical prices. Most of the veggies and fruits were of second-grade quality. They were clean, though not edible. We brought the materials home the previous day, cleaned the veggies and fruits well. We added some water to tomatoes, beet, papaya peels and coriander leaves to extract natural colours like red, scarlet pink orange and green. We brought ready packets of multani matti and besan, which are also every good for the skin. Moreover, we collected ash from Holi pyres the previous evening and fallen flowers from local plants as well.”   The event was a huge success and the venue was packed to the brim with people who enjoyed playing with these harmless and unique colours. We pasted each other with all these elements and even squashed tomatoes over each other’s heads. The venue partners served dairy-free thandai and chilled coffee as well.  

After-Effects

The following day,  the revelers gushed that their skin felt radiant after the celebrations. The multani matti and turmeric are  natural exfoliating agents that helped the face and skin feel fresh. This was very unlike regular Holi being celebrated that left oily streaks on the skin, which would not wash off for many days, and irritates the eyes as well.  
Note: All expenses incurred in events not directly related to animal-activism are borne individually by UFC activists.