The Anduri Utsav, popularly known as Butter Festival, celebrated at Dayara Bugyal of Uttarkashi district culminated on Thursday with much fanfare as villagers played ‘Holi’ by applying milk and butter instead of Gulal on each other.
Bugyal means a meadow or pasture in local Uttarakhandi dialect. Dayara Bugyal, situated at an altitude of 11,000 feet above sea level, is one of the pristine meadows in the state. Earlier this festival was celebrated by throwing cow dung on each other. Now, in place of cow dung, milk, butter, and buttermilk are used.
The villagers of Raithal, who take their cattle to graze in the meadows of Dayara Bugyal, believe that Lord Krishna and Bugyal Mata keep their watchful eyes over their cattle. Andhuri Holi is hence, an act of thanking the gods who protect their livelihood. The festival started with ritualistic prayers followed by folk dances presented by men and women from the local villages who danced to the tunes of folk instruments. Over the years the festival has become popular outside Uttarakhand. Tourists from Delhi and other parts of the country were present during this year’s Butter Festival.