Mumbai: Mumbai's loved god, Ganpati Bappa, is back to adorn the city's streets and the chorus of 'Ganpati Bappa Moreya' promises to drown the fears of an economic slowdown. Starting from the September 9, this year's Ganesh Chaturthi celebration promises to be as big as ever.
One of Mumbai's richest Ganpati mandals, the GSB Seva Mandal, will have a 12-feet tall idol, its four arms carved out of gold donated by a devotee and the total weight of the gold ornaments adorning this idol is expected to exceed 80 kg. Not just this, the mandal will have an insurance cover of a whopping Rs 223 crore as opposed to Rs 222 crore in 2011.
Then comes arguably Mumbai's most famous mandal, Lalbagcha Raja, where dozens of celebrities can be seen every year. Compared to an insurance cover of Rs 15 crore in 2011, this year the mandal will have a cover of Rs 71 crore. The mandal's decorations will cost more than Rs 17 lakh while Rs 3 crore gold will be used to decorate the idol.
Even though the recession seems to have left the rich mandals unfazed, scores of Mumbaikars who will bring home Ganpati, are doing so with an eye on their pockets. "What we bought last year, this year we have to buy at double the price, so this has affected," said a devotee.
Crores of Ganpati devotees over the country are expected to celebrate the festival this year, praying that the elephant god, known as the remover of obstacles, will bless the economy a speedy recovery.