Ganpati Visarjan: Over 50,000 idols immersed in Mumbai
A peaceful ‘visarjan’ of Lord Ganesha idols marked the end to the ten-day long festival Monday as lakhs of devotees bid adieu to the elephant-headed deity, including the famous ‘Lalbaugcha Raja’ idol. The immersion process which started since early hours Sunday culminated this morning with over 50,000 idols being immersed amidst fanfare and tight security. According to Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) statement, till 7 AM Monday, a total 50,250 idols were immersed at the designated natural and artificial spots, including at major sites Girgaon Chowpatty, Juhu beach, Powai lake, Dadar, Madh jetty, Marve. A total 2,577 immersions took place in the artificial lakes, the release said. An elaborate security arrangement was put in place for the large-scaled immersion by Civic administration, Mumbai Police, fire brigade, SRPF (State Reserve Police Force) and ITBP (Indo-Tibetan Border Police). While the entire ‘visarjan’ remained peaceful, only one incident took place where a 15-year-old was saved from drowning at the Girgaon Chowpatty. “Except the Girgaon Chowpatty where a boy was saved from drowning, entire festivities went peaceful,” an officer at MCGM’s Disaster Management control room said. A senior police officer told PTI cranes, watchtowers, drones, coast guard’s helicopters and floodlights were installed at most of the major immersion spots. A strong team of 35,055 assistant sub-inspectors and constables, 4,500 women constables along with 250 women officers, 1,000 SRPF jawans and 250 ITBP personnel, have been deployed to maintain law and order. In 2014, the civic body had given permissions to 1,188 Ganpati mandals all across the city, while it placed stringent norms this year also to check illegal erection of pandals. The traffic police also ensured smooth vehicular movement on the immersion routes as it closed 49 roads, while marked 55 roads as ‘one way’. Meanwhile, the immersion procession concluded last night in the second capital – Nagpur, with thousands of devotees thronging the streets. Most of the immersions took place in Butala lake in west Nagpur and Gandhi Sagar lake in eastern part of the city. In Pune, hundreds of people had gathered from the Laxmi Road where the first five ‘Manache’ (revered) Ganesh mandalas took part in the immersion procession. In a break from tradition, this year the first five revered Ganesh idols were immersed in artificial tanks in view of water scarcity resulting from a truant monsoon. The procession concluded in the wee hours with no untoward incident being reported. Similarly in Nashik, devotees bid adieu to Lord Ganesha as the immersion process concluded in the wee hours. Nashik Police said no untoward incident was reported in the city and adjoining areas.