A time to bond with the family

Elaborate Activities

Be it in a Spiderman costume, sitting on a tricycle or just sporting plain clothes, the elephant-headed god appeals to people of different age groups. On Ganesha Habba, families in the City come together to celebrate the spirit of the festival.

Festive spirit: Ganesha Habba  brings out the traditional side of many Bangaloreans.

Marking the birthday of Ganesha, this festival brings out the traditional side of a modern city.

Little children are taught popular rhymes like Ganesha Banda Kai Kadabu Thinda....

The men of the household head out to bring home the idol and the women get busy making everything Ganesha likes to eat.

In many localities, groups of young men go around with their ‘collection boxes’, seeking donations to organise special functions for the festival.

 Preparations like buying banana leaves, puja items, new clothes and cleaning the house are carried out a week in advance. The highlight of the day, however, is bringing home the idol.

Not many families bring home the Ganesha idol these days, but those who do follow it up with an elaborate puja.

They also keep a variety of sweets and delicacies in front of the god and invite people over to see the idol. “He is the remover of all obstacles. Hence, it is said that one must see as many Ganesha idols as possible — it brings good luck,” explains Suresh, a professional.

The elaborate traditional feast in the afternoon is something that most people look forward to. With busy work schedules, many prefer to head out for the feast. Some restaurants even offer packed meals that one can book a day in advance.

The pandals put up at various localities are big crowd-pullers too.

Niranjan, a student, says that every year he has a blast with his friends, visiting various pandals. “Many of them have orchestras that play good music and the procession, before the idol is submerged, is great fun,” he adds. 

In the evening, everyone heads out to meet their friends and families. But they are sure to come back before the moon rises.

Pragnya, a housewife, explains, “This is because on this day, the moon god is said to have made fun of Ganesha’s tummy, when he was returning home after all the celebrations.

That’s when the angry Ganesha cursed the moon. It is believed that all those who look at the moon on that day will be cursed too.”

The festival is also a time to bond with the entire family.

Actress Radhika Pandit agrees with this view, saying that she forgets all her diet plans on this day. “There is so much energy all around during this festival.

We used to keep the idol at home but now, we head out to our relatives’ houses instead and spend time with my family. But being a foodie, the real highlight for me are the dishes. Mom makes all the delicacies — out of which, I really like kadubu and chakkuli.

There is always plenty of food around and what better way to usher in the festival than share it with the people you love?” she adds.

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