Hundreds of women hit men with sticks during Lathmar Holi celebrations

Hundreds of women celebrated Lathmar Holi in northern India this week, by hitting men with sticks. Lathmar Holi is celebrated days before the actual Holi takes place, in Barsana and Nandgaon, near Mathura in Uttar Pradesh. On this day, the women of Barsana take charge and all that men need to do is save themselves from the charged-up womenfolk. Men from Lord Krishna’s village Nandgaon visit Barsana to play ‘Lath Maar Holi’, where, after paying homage to the only temple dedicated to Radha in India, they sing provocative songs in a bid to seek the attention of local women. Seemingly offended, the women then hit the men with sticks called 'lathis'. The men protect themselves with wooden shields. This tradition is said to date back to the time when Lord Krishna started the tradition of Holi, the festival of colours, by applying colour to Radha's face.