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Ganesha festival took on a greener hue this time

Bangalore, Sept 12, 2013, DHNS: 1:40 IST
The leftover: An idol of Gowri in a broken state after immersion in the Ulsoor lake on  Thursday. DH Photo
Come Ganesha Chaturthi, the City goes into a frenzy about installing Ganesha idols at public places, which continues for almost three months.

However, this year there is a remarkable reduction in the installation of Ganesha at public places, all because of the awareness drive by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB), police department and other civic agencies.

According to BBMP sources, on Ganesha Chaturthi, when the Ganesha Paksha (fortnight) begins, 1.2 lakh Ganesha idols were immersed at various tanks in the City. Last year on the same day, 1.9 lakh Ganesha idols were immersed. On the second day, only 14,000 idols were immersed, which was 70,000 last year.

There was substantial decrease in immersion of idols on the third and the fourth day too.
A senior Palike officer said, “The trend is quite encouraging because it shows that people have responded well to the awareness drive. We have instances where people decided to keep the idols safely for next year or exchange them with other Sarvajanika Ganesha pooja mandalis.”

He opined that many people may have opted for bio-degradable Ganesha idols made of clay and immersed them in a bucket of water in their homes and then pour the water out at safe places, without causing any damage to the environment.

This year, the BBMP as well as the KSPCB held an extensive awareness drive educating the masses on what kind of material and colours should be used to make eco-friendly Ganesha idols. The agencies had also approached the idol makers as well as the Ganesha pooja mandalis, asking them to use bio-degradable Ganesha idols. The police department too discouraged people from installing Ganeshas at every corner of the City. They gave permission only at important places.

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