For a hassle-free festival

Vital Measures

For a hassle-free festival

Ganesha Habba is as much a time for celebrating as it is for avoiding muck-raising. Unbridled celebrations can leave behind a trail of pollution in the City’s water bodies, in the form of synthetic painted idols, flowers, banners and garlands.

Fire crackers and loudspeakers, which come along with the chariots, are not only an irritant but cause noise pollution as well. In addition to this, the Bangalore traffic police will have to deal with huge crowds at immersion tanks across the City.

 Metrolife interacts with the BBMP, the traffic and the law-and-order wing of the Bangalore city police to understand what preparations are underway to ensure a hassle-free immersion process.

The Bangalore traffic police is engaged in the task of putting up road diversions and deputing additional traffic personnel at immersion tanks and mobile vans. The processions begin on the fifth, ninth and eleventh day after the festival. “Our forces will be deputed in and around Sankey Tank and Ulsoor.

This is where we have the maximum number of immersions. Every year, we cordon off Tannery Road, which has processions converging from places like Nagawara, Venkateshpura, Govindapura, Bagalur, Kothanur and Hebbal. Areas in the northern side use Hebbal Tank and those from the southern end immerse their idols in lakes and tanks around those areas,” informs Saleem.

The BBMP has identified 32 lakes for immersion purposes and there are 88 mobile immersion tankers that will be moving across the City. Some of the lakes that have been identified exclusively for immersion purposes are Allasandra in Yelahanka and Sankey Tank, as well as lakes in Dasarahalli, Lalbagh, Varthur, Ulsoor, Yediyur, Hebbal, Hulimavu and Madivala, just to mention a few.

The mobile tanks can be used to immerse idols up to three feet in height. Special Commissioner of the BBMP, K Niranjan, says that the public has been instructed to adhere to the guidelines issued by the BBMP. “We have requested people to avoid using polluting material and loudspeakers.

Any negligence will attract a fine,” says Niranjan, who adds, “We have directed people to complete the immersions by September 30.” There are garbage bins stationed at the entrance of immersion spaces to make sure that people don’t throw garbage around.”

Additional commissioner of police (law and order) T Suneel Kumar adds, “Taking into consideration people’s sentiments, we haven’t set a deadline for immersions. People usually start the processions after 7 pm and once they do, it is difficult for them to return with the idol if we lay down a strict deadline.”

He further states, “Organisations will have to take permission for loudspeakers from the jurisdictional police station and if people are found violating the rules, they will be booked for public nuisance under the Karnataka Police Act.”  

More than traffic jams around immersions spaces, people are worried about pollution that the festival will leave behind. Rajeev E M, a financial consultant, points out, “The traffic jams will be cleared but the damage caused due to environmental pollution is upsetting. People shouldn’t use colours and material that pollute the environment.”

Varsha Vijay, a student, adds, “People must invest in eco-friendly Ganesha idols and be sensitive to the environment. The colour used in all these idols cause long-term damage to the lakes and their surroundings.”

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