A piñata is a brightly-colored papier-mâché covering either a clay container or cardboard shape. It may have originated in China. Marco Polo discovered the Chinese fashioning figures of cows, oxen or buffaloes, covered with colored paper and adorned with harnesses and trappings. Special colors traditionally greeted the New Year. When the mandarins knocked the figure hard with sticks of various colors, seeds spilled forth. After burning the remains, people gathered the ashes for good luck throughout the year.
Nowadays, piñatas have been adopted in many parts of the world and have become a more common sight at parties and celebrations, especially in Central America and the Southern United States, mostly due to the close influence from Mexican culture.
Piñatas have also been introduced to Europe over the last several decades, although at a much slower pace. India is one of few countries outside of the Americas to have adopted the Mexican tradition of the piñata for cultural celebrations. [Wiki]