Festive Preparations.

Mumbai city is gearing up to welcome her favourite deity Ganesha (the Elephant God) and the festival of the year Ganeshotsav (Festival of Lord Ganesha)

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An artist is giving final touches to the Ganesha idol

This year the festival starts on 25th of August and would continue for the next ten days. Diwali is considered as the biggest festival of the year. However, Diwali is more of a family festival and is celebrated with family and friends. Whereas, festival of Lord Ganesha is a public celebration which brings all the Mumbaikars out on the roads to enjoy the processions and visit various Ganesha Pandals. In addition, many families also celebrate this festival at home; they install Ganesha idols at home and worship it.

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Eco-friendly small Ganesha idols waiting to be taken home for worshipping.

Earlier this was only a family festival and was celebrated at home. During India’s freedom struggle, a great leader, Lokamanya Tilak initiated public celebrations with the view of bringing people together and awaken an awareness among the people. Since then it is celebrated in all the cities of Maharashtra with a number of pandals erected in nook and corners of the cities. Each pandal is decorated with different themes. All through the festival days various entertainment as well as informative programmes are arranged. On tenth day the idols are immersed in water with great fanfare.

So it is great ten days of fun and frolic.

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Since Ancient Times …..

In today’s age, we all are aware of the Natural Resources — or rather the shortage of natural resources, and the need to use them carefully. Even the children are now taught in the school from a young age that whatever the nature provides us with, is precious and is in limited quantity; so wastage of any kind should be avoided.  Continue reading

An almost forgotten tradition…Bhondla

It is still a few more days for Navaratri, and the air is already full of festivities. The markets are flooded with ethnic and rustic apparels, accessories and jewellery, specially for dandiya – garba, the local Kali temple premises are abuzz with pandal preparations for Devi Pooja.

But all these things carry me back in time to a totally different scene and celebration — that of Bhondla or Hadga. It is a Maharashtrian tradition and is celebrated over the nine days of Navaratri. Continue reading