Ganesh Chaturthi is being celebrated today on September 10. It is one of the most popular festivals that devotees eagerly awaits. Though the occasion is observed all across India, Mumbai’s celebration particularly is top notch. The frenzy surrounding the 10-day festival is overwhelming in the city.
So how does Mumbai plan to celebrate Ganesmahotsav in 2021 amid pandemic?
Mumbai literally pulsates with an infectious energy and vigour during the Ganpati mahotsav. However, owing to the Covid-19 situation, the celebrations have been naturally toned down. There have been restrictions imposed by BMC. Since last year, Mumbai has been following a muted celebration sans the grandeur.
Usually, there are over 3000 applications seeking permission for pandals, but this year it came down to 1273.
Nevertheless, the zeal and celebratory spirit continue to be intact as BMC has granted permission to 519 mandals (that makes it around 16% pandals) to set up Ganpati pandals by strictly adhering to the social distancing and other pandemic norms.
- Meetings with police are being held to ensure a smooth running of the Ganesh Chaturthi festivities.
- BMC, police and government have been working in close collaboration to make sure all rules are followed.
- Various puja committees have ensured 70-80% of volunteers have been vaccinated with both the Covid-19 doses.
- Devotees have been urged to resort to online puja and darshan.
- As per Maharashtra government directives issued, no Ganpati statue in pandals would be more than 4 feet tall. Height of idols at home has been restricted to 2 feet.
- Though last year most of the mandals had stayed away from celebration due to the pandemic, this year the city has been gearing up for the Ganpati festival by planning 2 months ahead.
Ahead of the Ganesh Chaturthi festival, take a look at the 5 famous Ganpati pandals in Mumbai whose iconic set ups transform the city into a creative fest:
Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal: This is the most well-known Ganpati pandal (founded in 1934) that has its idol’s famed carving patterns patented. The Lalbaugcha Raja organisers have installed a four-feet-tall idol of Lord Ganesha in keeping with the government guidelines instead of their trademark 15-feet-tall idol. Their theme is “Majha Ganeshotsav, Majhi Javabdari” (my Ganeshotsav, my responsibility) this year
Andhericha Raja (founded by Tata Special Steel and Excel Industries Ltd. In 1966): It is an extremely popular pandal that not only sees massive crowds thronging for darshan but also Bollywood celebrities.
GSB Seva Mandal Ganpati: It’s the city’s richest mandal wherein the rituals are performed round the clock, and the idol is decked with silver and gold jewellery.
Khetwadicha Ganraj (founded in 1959): Its 12th lane Ganpati pandal is the most famous. Last year the idol’s trunk was decked with diamonds. The idol’s shape and its maker have remained the same over the years.
Keshavji Naik Chawl Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal: Founded by Lokmanya Tilak (1893), this pandal is the one of the oldest. It has an eco-friendly Ganesha idol.