With just about 10 days left for one of Maharashtra’s must-see events, the Supreme Court has asked the Bombay High Court to adjudicate on a number of security issues surrounding Dahi Handi. It looks likely that the Bombay High Court, which will hear the Dahi Handi matter on August 7, will lift the height limit as well as the age barrier of Govindas. The Maharashtra government has assured the court that it will address all safety issues mandated by the court earlier.
Dahi Handi What’s the controversy all about? Things you need to know
Till 2014, children under the age of 18 could climb the upper tiers of the human pyramid and break the Dahi Handi and pocket the money. The kids are known as Govindas.
The higher the pyramid, the more the money to be won. There are primarily three Pratishthans that sponsor the Dahi Handis and shell out the money.
How much money?
In 2012, Jai Jawan Mandal won Rs 15 lakh by breaking the Dahi Handi perched at a height of 43.79 feet. That’s a record & even the Guinness Book has acknowledged it.
Following a spate of accidents leading to serious injuries, the Bombay High Court directed that kids were not permitted in the upper tiers.
The court also suggested a number of safety measures to be put in place. In 2016, the court even fixed the height of the pyramids at 20 feet.
- Mattresses to be placed around the pyramids.
- Helmets to be worn by persons who would break the handi.
- Knee and elbow pads to be worn by all dahi handi members.
Women in Dahi Handi
Women, too, participate in the handi-breaking ritual, though numbers are less and so is the prize money. It varies between Rs 25,000 and Rs 50,000.