Pune: Municipal Corporation’s Fire Brigade department has asked police officials to block access to immersion ghats along the Mutha river flowing through the city. This request has been placed as the fire brigade has not deployed their staff at the ghats as immersion of Ganesh idols has been banned at public places this year in wake of the Covid-19 outbreak in the city.
The Ganesh idols are immersed in the river water or canals or temporary artificial tanks created by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) every year during the Ganeshotsav. The immersion (visarjan) of the domestic Ganesh idols is done on the second, fifth, seventh and tenth day of the festivals as per tradition.
Mayor Murlidhar Mohol and Joint Commissioner of Pune Police Dr Ravindra Shisve had earlier said that if permission is given to citizens for immersion of Ganesh idols at public places like the ghats or canal or artificial tanks, then about 20 to 25 lakh citizens are likely to step out on these three specific days and it would not be advisable to do so if the spread of coronavirus is to be kept in check.
On an average, five to six Ganesh idols are immersed in artificial water tanks and the immersion ghats on the river after the Ganeshotsav. Besides the PMC personnel, fire brigade jawans and officers are deployed at the canal and immersion ghats for citizens safety. These places are manned by the Fire Brigade personnel to prevent any untoward incident especially if water is being released from the Khadakwasla dam into Mutha river due to heavy rainfall.
This year, water discharge from the dam is also on a large scale and no fire brigade personnel are put on duty at these ghats. Hence the fire department has asked PMC and police to close the roads heading towards these places.