Mumbai: As the Hindu-calendar month of Bhaadrapada arrives, the city of Mumbai is all set to welcome its favourite Lord Ganesha. The 10-day long festival is celebrated in lively spirits across Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Goa.
The festival is celebrated with much fan fare in Mumbai where pandals put up extravagant Ganesh idols every year. This year Mumbai's GSB Mandal will house a Ganesha idol that has been made out of 80 kgs of gold at a whopping Rs 23 crore making it the richest idol in the city.
It was 60 years ago that Arun Pursnik's father Madhavan installed a humble 14 inch Ganpati to give something back to the city. But with each passing year, the idol didn't just become 14 feet taller but even the celebrations and festivities attached to this Mandal became grander.
"This year we are attaching a garland worth 92 lakhs," senior trustee GSB Mandal Satish Naik said.
With all that glitter the richest deity of Mumbai comes with an insurance worth Rs 50 crore a day. That is a total insurance of Rs 250 crore for the five day festivity. A heavy premium is paid insuring not just the gold on the deity but even the safety of its devotees.
It is not the opulence of the Gold Ganpati but it is the faith and vows that are believed to be fulfilled at this Mandal which attracts thousands of devotees not just from the city but from across the world.
Over the next five days, this gold Ganesh is expected to receive more than Rs 6-7 crore in cash, gold and silver donations from its devotees.