The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal are among those who said they will not take part in Holi festivities this year, in honour of the 42 CRPF soldiers who died in the terror attack on their convoy at Pulwama on 14 February.
CRPF chief RR Bhatnagar announced on Wednesday that the paramilitary force will not have any official Holi function anywhere in the country in solidarity with the families of its personnel killed in Pulwama. Central Industrial Security Force, Border Security Force and other paramilitary forces have also decided to refrain from officially celebrating the festival of colour.
Rajnath and Kejriwal both announced their decisions on Wednesday. The home minister spoke to ANI, while the Aam Aadmi Party tweeted Kejriwal's decision.
By Thursday, Major Surendra Poonia, new Bharatiya Janata Party vice-president Baijayant Panda, the party's Chandigarh MP Kirron Kher, Darjeeling MP SS Ahluwalia and Minister of State for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri had also tweeted that they will shun Holi celebrations this year in solidarity with the Pulwama fallen.
Delhi Chief Minister @ArvindKejriwal will not celebrate the Holi festival tomorrow as a mark of respect to the martyrs of Pulwama terror attack.
" AAP (@AamAadmiParty) March 20, 2019
As a mark of respect for our CRPF bravehearts who made the supreme sacrifice in Pulwama ,I am not celebrating/playing Holi this year. My mind & heart is with the families who grieve & mourn their loved ones. Wishing Everyone a #HappyHoli Play Safe🙏 " Major Surendra Poonia (@MajorPoonia) March 21, 2019
While praying for their families, i also pray that the festival of colours will bring good tidings for all of you & your loved ones 🙏🙏
" Chowkidar Baijayant Jay Panda (@PandaJay) March 21, 2019
Will not be celebrating #holi and there will be no #festivities at my residence in remembrance of the soldiers lost in the #Pulwama terror attack and in memory of late Shri #ManoharParrikar. God bless their souls! " Chowkidar Kirron Kher (@KirronKherBJP) March 20, 2019
I will not be celebrating Holi this year in memory of the 40 @crpfindia jawans martyred in the #PulwamaAttack, and in solidarity with their families & loved ones, whose homes shall today stand testimony to their grief, amongst a world full of colour and festivities.
" SS Ahluwalia (@SSAhluwaliaMP) March 21, 2019
May the colours & positivity of Holi give us yet another reason to stay together as one people & celebrate the unity of India. However, to honour the sacrifice of our Pulwama Martyrs, Lakshmi & I are not celebrating Holi. Thoughts & prayers with the families of the bravehearts. pic.twitter.com/2cyKvErWzO " Chowkidar Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) March 21, 2019
Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said he will not celebrate Holi not just because it comes in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack but also in light of the passing of former Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar.
My family & I are not celebrating Holi this year owing to the sadness that engulfs us in the aftermath of the #PulwamaAttacks & #ManoharParrikar Ji's untimely death However,I do hope that the year ahead is filled with the colours of joy & success for you & your family. #Holi2019
" Chowkidar Vijay Kumar Singh (@Gen_VKSingh) March 21, 2019
The gesture was not limited to prominent personalities alone, as several others tweeted that they, too, would remember the CRPF soldiers who died instead of celebrating Holi.