Hola Mohalla, the Sikh Spring festival is celebrated at Anandpur Sahib in Punjab over 3 days starting the day after Holi.
Young Group Playing Holi (2020-03)Incredible India!
A celebration of brotherhood, fraternity and valour, it holds great significance for Nihang Sikhs, an armed Sikh warrior order.
A Show of Swordsmanship (2020-03)Incredible India!
Celebrating the Festival
A major part of the festivities include a display of skills by various groups of Nihang Sikhs.
Groups Displaying Skills with the Chakra (2020-03)Incredible India!
Some of these skills horsemanship, swordsmanship, archery and more.
The Importance of Horsemanship
A major part of the display is horsemanship. Daredevil feats such as riding four horses at the same time...
A Display of Horse Riding Skills (2020-03)Incredible India!
...and riding them through the crowd are just a few examples.
A Daring Display of Horsemanship (2020-03)Incredible India!
The Nihang and their Horses
The Nihang Sikhs, who celebrate Hola Mohalla, deeply care for their animals, dedicating a long time to feeding, washing, and pampering them.
A Show of Horsemanship (2020-03)Incredible India!
The chakri is another form of skill shown at the stadium.
A Man with the Chakra (2020-03)Incredible India!
An instrument made of balls attached with string, it is twirled in a stunning display by the young and old alike.
Skills with the Chakra (2020-03)Incredible India!
In the past, the chakri was used as a weapon, with iron balls, and would be twirled in the face of opponents.
A Man Displaying His Skill with the Chakra (2020-03)Incredible India!
The Nihang and Motorbikes
Daredevil stunts on the motorbike are also a part of the display. Participants display rigorously practiced but dangerous feats like riding blindfolded, standing up straight on a moving bike, showing off their skills in marksmanship and more.
A Man Displaying Aim on a Motorbike (2020-03)Incredible India!
Motorbikes replace horses for some participants as they display incredulous feats on the moving vehicle.
A Balancing Act (2020-03)Incredible India!
The Importance of Swordplay
Swordplay and mock fights are also put up at the skill display.
Most of the friendly discord fighting displays use sticks instead of actual swords.
Two Friends Displaying Swordsmanship (2020-03)Incredible India!
The individual shows of swordsmanship use real swords in an intricate display of fighting spirit and skill.
A Man Displaying his Swordsmanship (2020-03)Incredible India!
The Significance of the Festivities
The battles enacted and stories shared during the celebration help the Nihang Sikhs strengthen their commitment to the Khalsa path, involving asceticism and austerity.
A Man Displaying his Skill with the Sword (2020-03)Incredible India!