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Dr. Chander Shekhar Singh
Assistant Professor, Department of Linguistic, Rajdhani College, University of Delhi
(Published on: 16 September, 2019 @09 PM)

Human beings are the organisms in the biosphere those have formed a very complexcultural and traditional values for their own social system. They have passedtheir experiences from generations to generations. They not only fix certainsocial norms for the social system but also celebrate festivals to maintainstable relationship with each other or among themselves and Holi is one ofthem. Holi is a festival of colors and fun. In ancient and medieval times, Holiwas safe because natural colored extracts from herbs or petals of flowers wereused. Chemicals were never used to make Holi colors. With the change of time,the things are changed. The use of environment friendly colors have beenreplaced with harmful chemicals along with metals, glass, mobile oil etc. Allsuch materials are extremely toxic and carcinogenic.



Lead Oxide

Anaemia, headache, abdominal pain, joint discomfort and old age osteoporosis

Mercury Sulphite

Headache, increased heart rate, itching, tremors, falling blood pressure, and forgetfulness.

Copper Sulphate

Itching, redness or swelling of the eye and even temporary or permanent blindness.

Chromium iodide

Severe allergy or induction of bronchial asthma in a hypersensitive person.

Aluminium Bromide

Human carcinogen


Irritation in mouth, throat and stomach; eye irritation and redness; mutagenesis and growth impairment.


Genotoxic carcinogen, causes damage to bones, eyes and lungs.


Cancer and genetic disorders as well as degenerative changes in liver, spleen, kidney, and urinary bladder.

Gentian Violet

Skin discoloration , dermatitis, skin allergy or

Irritation of the mucous membrane.


Cancer causing material,

Silica and Powdered Glass

Damage eyes and skin.

Engine Oil

Skin allergy, itching or even temporary blindness.

[ref.- Dipanjan Ghosh(2019): Play Holi...Naturally!Published in the March issue of Science Reporter (a CSIR publication), (56.3,44-47)].

Table 1: Table shows theeffects of chemical colors on human body

       The Chemical colors consist of someinorganic as well as organic dyes which are pollutants for the biosphere. Thedanger due to pollutants has already increased manifold. Today pollution is sowidespread, substantial, and real that the very existence of life isthreatened. During the days of Holi celebration(s) - colorful pastes, powderedcolors and water colors are used. Each chemical color is very toxic for humanbody and the surrounding environment polluted cities in world are now in India(WHO data). We have to avoid using such harmful colors and we should use thehome-made colors.  The home-made colorsare made from natural sources like Turmeric, Neem, Tesu etc. The powder of suchnatural sources has some medicinal values for the human body. The home-madecolors are environment friendly and good for health.

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