Surat's green take on Ganesha festival

In what is termed a unique initiative, Surat district administration will hold a “Maati mela” or clay exhibition for idol makers ahead of the Ganesha festival from Saturday. Organised in two separate venues in the city, the seven-day festival will provide 50 stalls at each of the venues for the idol makers for a very low price.

“Idol makers can cast the murthis in the venue and paint them with natural colours,” said an official. He said the initiative would ensure that makers create small Ganesha idols with eco-friendly materials. “Those who care about the environment would visit the stalls to buy the idols,” the official said.

District officials said this is the first time the initiative has been taken up. They said it would be repeated prior to the festival where immersion of idol  is involved.

“The administration has been spending several lakhs to keep the rivers clean and ensure protection of environment. It would go a long way in ensuring religious obligations are met without damaging the ecology.”

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