Making a home in our hearts

Sakal Times
Wednesday, 12 September 2018

With Ganeshotsav starting today, the celebratory mood has set in. Popular television stars tell us how  they are welcoming the Lord home

SAUMYA TANDON, AKA ANITA, OF ‘BHABIJI GHAR PAR HAIN!’
“I honestly have mixed feelings regarding the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi. We do have many idols of Ganeshji in our home because we do not immerse the idols. As much as I understand and appreciate our religion and history, the immersion of Ganesha is not part of our culture. It was something that Lokmanya Tilak started during the freedom struggle. The idea of eco-friendly idols is also something that I do not support as I feel it’s a mere lip service. I am absolutely against the ritual of immersing idols as I strongly believe that they cause immense water pollution. It is disgraceful to see the same idol that we worship and revere, lying on the beaches broken. The processions that are carried during Ganesh Chaturthi are extremely noisy, some people are drunk and misbehaving on the streets. I believe religious festivals are meant to be celebrated peacefully, causing disturbance to the environment is not a sign of an evolved society. We have a puja at home. I decorate the house and sweets are prepared at home, that’s how I prefer celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi.”

SHUBHANGI ATRE, AKA ANGOORI BHABHI, OF ‘BHABIJI GHAR PAR HAIN!’
“I am a spiritual person and have always believed that Lord Ganesha resides within us. During the 10 days of this festival, I often keep a fast and make a promise to Ganeshji to keep myself away from negative habits. While many people believe in the Ganesh Visarjan tradition, I believe that the pollution caused due to the celebration affects the our environment thereby leading to several natural calamities. Eco-friendly Ganesh idols can somewhere help to reduce the pollution and lay out a different and positive message to the future generation.     Along with guiding me to make the right decisions in my life, I hope Ganeshji also brings great happiness and good health to all his devotees.”

AYUSH ANAND, AKA PUSHKAR, OF ‘PERFECT PATI’
“I believe bringing home an eco-friendly Ganapati idol which is one of the best ways to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi. This way we can perform our rituals and at the same time serve the society. My mom always comes from Delhi to celebrate the festival in Mumbai. I’m eagerly waiting for my mom’s arrival, along with Ganeshji. As for the wishes, that is a secret between me and Bappa, so I can't reveal them. However, I do ask for blessings for my new show Perfect Pati to do very well!”

SACHIN SHROFF, AKA NAND BABA, OF ‘PARAMAVATAR SHRI KRISHNA’
“I’m quite religious in real life and I always seek Lord Ganesha’s blessings before starting anything. So celebrating Ganeshotsav with family and friends is something I have been doing for the past 10 years. In true sense, he is a Vighnaharta (remover or demolisher of obstacles) so all that I ask from him is happiness, harmony, and good health and if time permits, I will definitely be visiting some pandals in the city as well as homes of friends who are hosting Ganeshji.”

SAYALI SANJEEV, AKA VIDHITA, OF ‘PERFECT PATI’
“Ganesh Chaturthi has always been the most special festival for me. We always get shadu mati idols at home, which are completely eco-friendly. I ensure that I use eco-friendly decorations too. This year too we’ll be having a puja at home with close family and friends. All I wish and pray to Bappa is to keep my family in good health and for my new show Perfect Pati to be a great success.”

ROHITASHV GOUR, AKA TIWARI JI, OF ‘BHABIJI GHAR PAR HAIN!’
“I realised the value and scale of Ganesh Chaturthi only after shifting to Mumbai. I began celebrating this festival with my family after getting married but considering the environmental impact and damage caused by the regular Ganesh idols, we decided to switch over to eco-friendly ones.  Since the last two years, we have been celebrating the festival with eco-friendly idols. Every year we host Ganeshji at our home and I pray to him that our show Bhabiji Ghar Par Hain continues climbing the ladder of success while spreading happiness.” 

FARNAZ SHETTY, AKA SIDDHI, OF ‘SIDDHIVINAYAK’
“I think Ganesh Chaturthi is a really beautiful and warm festival, particularly since it gives the entire family a chance to bond. I have always worshipped Lord Ganeshji and believed him to be the reason behind my constant success. In fact, as a kid, I always thought that any wish whispered in Ganeshji’s ear, will surely come true in life. Working currently with the television industry, I think the wish did come true considering I play a character named Siddhi in a show on &TV that is titled Siddhivinayak. On this occasion, I urge people to celebrate a harmless and less polluted eco-friendly festival.”

HIMANSHU MALHOTRA, AKA LORD VISHNU, OF ‘PARAMAVATAR SHRI KRISHNA’
“Ganesh Chaturthi is one festival which we all celebrate enthusiastically, especially we Mumbaikars since it holds a special place in our hearts. I have been celebrating Ganeshotsav for the past seven years. I believe we all get what we deserve, so this Ganesh Chaturthi I just want to ask Bappa to shower his love and blessings on me and my loved ones. However, I feel that the festival has become too commercial, I wanted to do something different and put some meaning to it. So, when I came across the idea of making the   festival eco-friendly, I brought home an eco-friendly Ganesha idol and urged all my relatives and friends to do the same. 

Watch all these shows on &TV.

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