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AP Photos: Joyous explosions of color for Holi festival

March 2, 2018

A girl's face is smeared in color as she celebrates Holi, the Hindu festival of colors, in Mumbai, India, Friday, March. 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)

Millions of faces were smeared red and green, yellow and purple. Streets were splashed with colored powder. And countless water balloons burst across India and Nepal in the annual Hindu festival of Holi.

The festival, a celebration of warm weather, good harvests and the defeat of evil, brings out millions of people, from toddlers to the elderly, to throw powder at one another and play with water balloons and squirt guns. The two-day festival is mostly celebrated Friday.

But it has a seamier side too, with plenty of partiers fueled by alcohol or the cannabis-based drink bhang, and many women complain of groping amid the crowds of people.

New Delhi police have warned in recent days that they would crack down on drunken drivers, people throwing water balloons at passersby and stores selling balloons more than 2 centimeters (0.8 inches) long.

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