As always, Pune came out in large numbers to bid adieu to their favourite Elephant God, Lord Ganesha, whose enveloping presence unites the city every year.
Noticeably, the ban on loudspeakers and dolby systems also ensured it was a comparatively quieter and peaceful festival.
The streets were flooded with people from different faiths, all gathered in their festive best to witness the grand processions accompanied by the crescendo of the ‘Dhol Tasha’ to give Bappa a majestic farewell.
A commendable change seen this year was that citizens adopted several Eco-friendly measures to keep the environment in check, without compromising on the fervour of the festivity. This time around, the PMC initiatives in this direction have brought visible results.
“This year, we decided to give the festivities a personal touch by making our very own Bappa with ‘Shadu Clay’,” shares Rajni Rampal, a higher secondary school teacher.
“My kids are now big enough, hence, we thought of teaching them this art and involving them in the festival. Both of them made their own Ganpati idols too and enjoyed the entire process a lot.
We even made our own decorations and avoided buying anything from the market. We skipped the led lamps and resorted to the traditional lamps and ‘diyas’ for lighting.
“On the fifth day, we immersed the idols in a water tub on our terrace itself. The next day we took the soil out in a pot, mixed some organic manure to it and planted some seeds in it.
This way, Bappa stays with us throughout the year too,” she smiles.
पर्यावरण अनुकूल गणेश विसर्जन
हे सोपे आणि सुरक्षित आहे, आपण सहज घरी करू शकता !
For Ganesh idol immersion…Follow an Eco-friendly solution!
It is simple and safe…You can easily do it at home!#pmc #pune #EcoFriendly #GaneshImmersion #WednesdayWisdom pic.twitter.com/9uYdfCsWpn
— PMC Care (@PMCPune) September 19, 2018
The Shetty family who came to the river beds to immerse their idols, used the water tanks made near the Lakdi Bridge and other similar spots to avoid polluting the water bodies.
“The corporation this year have done a commendable job of building these water tanks where we can immerse the idols and avoid disturbing the river ecosystem,” says Parimal Shetty.
“The provisions were made last year too, but was not publicised on a greater scale. This year, I hardly noticed anyone immersing idols in the river bodies. Mandals that have huge Idols aren’t left with much options, but for many of us, this option will help decrease the pollution.
Every year, you had body parts of Lord Ganesha lying on river beds and this would break our hearts. But this time, these initiatives will ensure that Ganeshji is sent with the same respect we see when we welcome him into our home.” Shetty shares.
Lavanya Shukrey, a resident of a housing society in Deccan shares their initiatives of collecting ‘Puja Nirmaya’ (Puja Waste) from the houses in their society and dumping them at designated dumping boxes near the river beds.
“The left-over flowers, prasad, and other puja materials are often dumped in the river bodies due to various religious reasons. We cannot just throw them along with our regular waste keeping in mind our religious sentiments.
Hence, we came of with an idea of collecting the entire societies puja waste in through these ten days of the festival and then discarding them at the ‘Nirmalay’ collecting containers that are setup by the PMC near the river.
This way, the sentiments aren’t hurt, and we keep the environment less polluted. We had also urged our people to segregate their wet and dry waste of puja material and hand it over to us, so that was then discarded in the white and green bins,” Lavanya adds.
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