PoP Ganesha idols available in market despite ban

PoP Ganesha idols available in market despite ban

PoP Ganesha idols available in market despite ban

The ban imposed by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board on Plaster of Paris (PoP) Ganesha idols appears to have had no effect as the idols are still available in the market for sale.

KSPCB Chairman Lakshman told DH  that there were around 50,000 PoP idols in the state of which 35,000 are in Bengaluru alone. “According to manufacturers, the idols available in the market are old stock and they have sought permission to clear them this year. We are ensuring that no idols are made or transported to the state this year. Deputy commissioners of border districts have been asked to keep a close watch.”

Last week, the Board held a meeting with the officials of the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), police department and representatives of Ganesha idol manufacturers’ association. The KSPCB and BBMP have decided not to allow immersion of PoP idols in any waterbody in the city.

They are now contemplating whether to direct manufacturers to withdraw the PoP idols from the market or send them to landfills for scientific disposal.

The pollution control board has banned the use and immersion of PoP idols in water bodies.
The action followed a notification issued by the  National Green Tribunal in 2013. The NGT had ordered pollution control boards to conduct a study on pollution caused due to immersion of PoP and coloured idols and ban them under Section 33 of The Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974.

Rajan, a Ganesha idol maker said that PoP idols were still in demand because of their attractive appearance and finishing quality.

“We have many PoP idols which need to be sold. But, problem will start from next year since getting clay for making idols is a huge challenge. Clay from lakes is suitable for making the idols and getting it will certainly be difficult given the restrictions imposed by environmental laws. The government will have to help us to get clay,” he said.

Mahadayi Ganapathi

Various models of Ganesha idols have hit the market this year too. But the star attraction this time is ‘Mahadayi Ganapathi.’ The idol has Mahadayi river in the backdrop and police baton-charging the men and women.

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