Ottawa, March 6, 2015 – The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister for Multiculturalism, issued the following statement marking Holi:
“Known as the Festival of Colours, and the Festival of Love, Holi is a joyous spring celebration of the Hindu faith. In recent years, it has grown to be popular among non-Hindus in Canada and around the world. Holi’s message of peace and camaraderie brings together people from different faiths and cultural communities.
“Holi was first celebrated as an agricultural festival centuries ago to bid farewell to winter and to welcome the season of rebirth and rejuvenation that is spring. Some of the customs of Holi include personal reflection, where people strive to resolve past disputes and work to repair and strengthen relationships.
“The Festival signifies victory of good over evil and many events have a playful nature. From the traditional Holika bonfire on the eve of Holi to the boisterous “water fights”, where participants throw water and coloured powder on each other, the celebrations take on a carnival atmosphere.
“For all Canadians, Holi is an opportunity to reflect on the tremendous contributions that Hindus have made to our country’s rich and diverse heritage.
“As Minister for Multiculturalism, I wish everyone a joyful and fun-filled Holi.