This year in Mumbai alone, the Ganpati celebrations is seeing over a 100,000 sarvajanik and household idols of Lord Ganesha immersed in the sea and lakes. This means an ever increasing rise in the faith and devotion of His believers. Unfortunately, this also means is that water bodies all over India will get another annual dose of thousands of tones of plaster of Paris, polythene bags, thermocol, plastics, and toxic chemical dyes. In the early days, idols were made of clay and painted with natural colors. But with rising costs and increasing demand, the manufacturing process has become more commercialised. Manufacturers have been using plaster of paris and artificial colors in lieu of the biodegradable materials used earlier causing a lot of harm. For instance after the idols are immersed, they’re found washed up all over the beach as Plaster of Paris is insoluble in water. The chemicals in the colors dissolve in the water, making it toxic and killing several aquatic animals. The festival in its present form has not only been harming the environment but also showing disrespect to India’s favorite deity. But in the NMMC Standing Committee Chairman Sandeep Naik, the city has found strong voices urging to promote artificial pond to celebrate Ganeshutsav the green way.
On the other hand, Standing Committee Chairman Sandeep Naik has also reiterated during meetings the need to promote artificial ponds. Artificial ponds have been made in both Mumbai and in Navi Mumbai at three places at Vashi, Kopri and Nerul. So if you are going to be a part of immersion rituals soon, here’s your chance of joining the mission of your bit for environment by celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi the eco-friendly way at artificial ponds.