as a child, Krishna was extremely jealous of Radha's fair complexion since he himself was very dark.One day, Krishna complained to his mother Yashoda about the injustice of nature which made Radha so fair and he so dark. To conciliate the crying young Krishna, the mother asked him to go and colour Radha's face in whichever colour he wanted. In a mischievous mood, naughty Krishna listened the advice of mother Yashoda and applied color on Radha's face, making her one like himself.
The lovable prank of Krishna where he applied color on Radha and other gopis using water jets called pichkaris gained acceptance and popularity. So much so that it evolved as a tradition and later, a full-fledged festival. Till now, use of colors and pichkaris is used in HOLI. Lovers long to apply color on their beloveds face and express their affection for each other