With Ganesh Chaturthi less than a month away, Maharashtra Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) has decided to increase the numbers of buses for ferrying people to Konkan for the festival and has urged all its employees to report to work in full strength.
The MSRTC has issued the mandate in an internal communication even though the Maharashtra government has not made any announcement in this regard.
According to Indian Express, the transport corporation is facing absenteeism with nearly 70 per cent of its Mumbai, Thane and Palghar staffers not reporting to work. It has also failed to pay its employees any salary for June; many have returned to their hometowns, the report said.
Meanwhile, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has urged Ganesh mandals in prominent areas like Andheri, Juhu and Versova to follow the concept of 'one ward-one Ganpati' this year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Vishwas Mote, the assistant municipal commissioner of K-West ward, which covers Andheri-West, Juhu, Versova and other areas, made this appeal in a letter to the Ganpati mandals last week.
The 10-day festival begins on 'Ganesh Chaturthi', which falls on August 22 this year. Mumbai is one of the worst-hit by coronavirus with over one lakh cases and more than 5,500 deaths due to the disease.
It is currently ranked fourth in the number of coronavirus cases among the 24 civic wards in the city. Mote in his letter said he has already urged all corporators in the K-West ward to implement the concept of 'one ward-one Ganpati'. He said as the height of Ganapati idols has to be restricted to four feet, ample number of artificial lakes will be created in the ward for the immersion of idols.