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A Pale Holi.

Vrindavan, Mathura, India.

© 2019. Vaibhav Katiyar. All rights reserved


Vrindavan, a city of widows, where Lata (name changed) lives isolated from the colors of the society. She looks on as other widows paint themselves in color which symbolizes a break from an age-old tradition which forbids a widow from wearing a colored saree. She lingers on the thought of her life before she was widowed and the times she has had to manage after her husband passed away; it has been a struggle to survive but she manages on very little. Life for many widows in India is still disheartening as they are shunned by communities and abandoned by families. The women are often ostracized by society due to various superstitions– it is said even the shadow of a widow can wreak havoc and bring bad luck. Lack of education and income forces them to beg and many turn to prostitution for survival. Forced to leave their homes, these widows find solace in each other's company in cramped shelters.

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