Ganesh festival: Mumbai issues guidelines for domestic celebrations; Pune yet to decide

Akshay Badwe
Saturday, 25 July 2020

Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has issued guidelines for the domestic celebrations of Lord Ganesh festival. Pune to declare the rulebook soon

Mumbai: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Friday said only five people should contribute in arrival and immersion processions during the upcoming Ganpati festival in the wake of coronavirus outbreak.

With clouds of COVID-19 looming in Maharashtra, the government recently also decided to limit the height of idols installed by Ganpati Mandals to only four feet during the festival. The Home Department also issued a notification stating the height of Lord Ganesh idols should not be taller than two feet. It also added that the idols should be made using eco-friendly materials.

Requesting people to chorus from doing any act that leads to the spread the pandemic, the administration warned that violators may also face strict action under relevant sections of the Epidemic Act 1897, the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and the Indian Penal Code.

The civic body has asked people to follow the safety protocols which include the use of masks, sanitisers and maintain social distancing during the festival. The civic body has also urged Mumbaikars to carry out immersion of eco-friendly idols at home.

Also, the Ganesh festival is celebrated grandly in Pune but the city which is witnessing a rapid spread of COVID-19 will also not celebrate the festival on a large grandeur.  The 10-day Ganesh festival will be celebrated from August 22 to September 1.

Eight prominent Ganesh Mandals in the city has already declared that the festival this year will be celebrated simply and traditionally to avoid crowding. The final-day immersion procession in Pune which is popular across the state often goes on for more than 24 hours and lakhs of people throng the roads. This year, the procession will also be a low key affair.

To control crowding due to the ongoing outbreak, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has also declared that this year’s festival will be a low key affair. Meanwhile, Pune city Mayor Murlidhar Mohol has also appealed Ganesh Mandals in Pune to immerse the idols of beloved Bappa at the Pandals.

Talking to Sakal Times, he said, “Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has already appealed the big Mandals in Pune to immerse the idol near their pandals. Keeping the threat of COVID-19 spread in mind, mandals should avoid immersion procession.”

“We are yet to finalise the guidelines but it will be declared within two days,” he added.

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