British Army celebrates Sikh festival of Holla Mohalla

The festival dates back to the 18th century

Team Parvasi – Inside

British Army celebrates Sikh festival of Holla Mohalla
London: The British Army celebrated the Sikh festival of Holla Mohalla with several British Sikh officers from the Defence Sikh Network (DSN) organising the annual spring festivities that showcase the spirit of courage, preparation and readiness.

The festival dates back to the 18th century when it was initiated by Guru Gobind Singh as a celebration of military prowess during which martial skills are honed and exhibited in fierce but well-natured competition.
This year’s British Army Sikh Holla Mohalla event took place at the Ash Ranges in Hampshire, south-east England, on Tuesday and involved traditional games such as tug of war as an ode to the military forebears who played these games.

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Defence Sikh Network said its members, mainly the soldiers from the British Army, celebrated the Sikh Military Festival by taking part in the military shooting competition, traditional Sikh martial arts and traditional Sikh military games and finally finished the festival with rang, the throwing of coloured powder as a mark of victory.

The network is the official organisation within the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) that supports inclusion from a Sikh perspective. The network said the festival particularly resonates with the Sikhs within the country’s armed forces and, therefore, it began celebrating it in the British Army in 2021.

“We feel this should be one of the premier events in the Sikh calendar to ensure our martial tradition continues. This event is a celebration of our longstanding tradition of Sikh military culture and values,” the Defence Sikh Network said.

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