KERI: Students of Vivekanand Vidya Mandir School in Keri, Sattari, on Tuesday were taught to make eco-friendly colours for the Holi festival by using flowers, leaves, and barks of plants. This year, the Festival of Colours is on March 12. Colours used for Holi are usually made from substances that pose a threat to human health. These chemical colours are hazardous, hence, there was a need to popularize use of eco-friendly colours to make the Festival of Colours more joyful.

Suryakant Gaonkar, of Bhuipal, has been involved in making available eco-friendly colours, but in small quantities, since the last five years. But this year, he has made available 80kg of eco-friendly colours.

Gaonkar says, “By making use of natural colours available in edible vegetables, I achieved success in manufacturing eco-friendly colours. I got green colour from Pudina, Nimb, Palak and ferns. I obtained the red colour from pods of Bixa Orellana and used Marigold flowers. I used turmeric powder for the yellow colour. Nature is full of multi-colours and colours manufactured from vegetables and other organic elements have proved to be healthy and non-polluting.”

Gopinath Gawas, in-charge of Vivekanand School of Keri, said, “We are making efforts to inculcate environmental values in students. Today, a workshop on making eco-friendly colours has proved to be an eye-opening experience for students and teachers. If we use of these eco-friendly colours, we can derive the real joy of the festival by using non-polluting and non-hazardous colours.”