Holi hai! As you drown in the spirit of the festival of colours, Metro takes you through the dos and don'ts and also tells you how to have a terrific Tuesday, at home or outside.
Processions complying with Calcutta High Court and Pollution Control Board guidelines can be taken out on Keshub Sen Street, College Street, MG Road, parts of Mechhuabazar Street and Rabindra Sarani, Zakaria Street, Phoolbagan Road, Colootola Street, Eden Hospital Road, CR Avenue, Bhupen Bose Avenue and Watgunge Road.
Processions will not be allowed on the thoroughfare in front of Writers' Buildings and Lalbazar police headquarters. Processionists will not be allowed to carry lathis, fire or weapons.
No celebrations in public places or while riding a truck or other vehicles; no spraying colour on policemen, army personnel or anyone in uniform; no keeping colours and sprinklers in open spaces; no splashing colour on passing vehicles; no fireworks; no use of harmful colours or spraying colours from highrises. Violation will lead to arrest and penalty, warn police.
Of the 2,500 minibuses, 600 will ply from 12.30 pm; CSTC buses will ply from 1.30 pm till midnight; CTC buses to run after 2.30 pm.
Metro Rail services will be available between 2 pm and 9.45 pm, at 15-minute intervals.
Only a handful of the daily fleet of 16,000 taxis is expected to ply till noon. Regular services to resume after that.
Trams to start plying after 2.30 pm.
Additional filtered water to be supplied to south Calcutta, Park Circus, Kidderpore and parts of east Calcutta from 11 am, allowing revellers to wash the colours away.
No alcohol to be served till 3 pm at pubs, nightclubs and hotels. After that, expect a free flow.
All city multiplexes ' INOX (Forum and City Centre), 89 Cinemas (Swabhumi) and Fame (Hiland Park) ' will open for the post-noon shows. Going by advance bookings, Priyadarshan's Malamaal Weekly is the movie to watch, followed by Memoirs of a Geisha, Taxi No. 9211 and Rang De Basanti.
For those reluctant to step out of home, catching a repeat of Sunday's historic South Africa-Australia match on ESPN from 2 pm could be the best bet.
Statutory warning: the colours that make up this carnival do not always have joyous after-effects, with rashes, allergies and stains that refuse to go.
'Colours sold at roadsides are not sanctioned by the government and may contain chemicals and metallic substances. Buy branded colours,' advises Dr Aparna Santhanam, head of medical services, Kaya Skin Clinic.
Done-to-death Bollywood Holi staples like Rang barse and Bhaang ka rang are out at this year's Holi bash. 'The craze this time is Marwari songs like Pallo latke, which have a Holi feel,' says DJ Akash.
Tradition is taking a tumble in the drinks department, too. Not bhaang but beer and Breezers are the party picks. 'Bhaang causes a big hangover which can last for 48 hours (and Wednesday is a working day). Beer is also the choice for summer,' says party hopper Saket Agarwal.
Laugh out loud
The Hasya Kavi Sammelan, particularly among north Indian communities, is a craze at this time of the year.
So be it professionals on stage, like The Great Indian Laughter Show on March 10 at Science City, or do-it-yourself joke sessions at home, it's all a big laugh this Holi.
'The Laughter Challenge comedians are in great demand in the city' Their back-to-back shows in the past few days have been running to capacity crowds with Ehsaan Qureshi leading the popular pack,' says Gurpreet Kaur Sethi of RGV Events, who organises Laughter Challenge shows in Calcutta.