Pune: While the number of idols donated by people instead of immersing them has decreased significantly this year, Nandini Jadhav of Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti said that this may actually not be negative and an outcome of increased awareness amongst people.
Only 2,873 Ganesh idols were donated by people this year, as opposed to the 5,604 idols that were donated last year.
Speaking about this, Jadhav said, “The number of idols donated is decreasing, but that may be because people are becoming more environment-friendly. The number of people immersing their idols in the tanks built at the ghats increases every year and also many people now buy eco-friendly idols and immerse them at their homes instead of going to the river ghats. As this number has increased, fewer people donate idols now. As the trend goes, even lesser people may donate idols as more will immerse them at home.”
She also pointed out that while there are many organisations trying to ensure that more people immerse their Ganesh idols in an eco-friendly manner, some organisations are opposing this.
“We can see people of certain organisations standing at the ghats near the immersion tanks, convincing God-fearing people that the right way to immerse idols is to do it in the flowing water. Such people should be banned from the ghats, as they may end up affecting at least some people, driving them away from celebrating an eco-friendly Ganesh festival.”
Although, the number of idols being immersed in tanks is increasing every year, there is still a long way to go, as far as achieving a successful eco-friendly immersion is concerned. According to the data from Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), while 2,19,291 idols are immersed in several tanks at the ghats and 2,873 are donated, around 1,96,911 idols were still immersed in the river this year.
Number of idols immersed in tanks and donated
Immersion 2016 2017
In immersion tanks 2,05,094 2,19,291
Idols donated 5,604 2,873