To search this blog

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Lalbaugcha Raja not coming this year ! Ganapati bappa moraya !!

When coronavirus claimed its first victim in country’s largest slum in April, many feared the disease would turn its narrow, congested streets into a graveyard, with social distancing or contact tracing all but impossible. But three months on, Mumbai's Dharavi offers a rare glimmer of hope with new infections shrinking, thanks to an aggressive strategy that focused on "chasing the virus, instead of waiting for disaster", according to city official Kiran Dighavkar. The sprawling slum has long been a byword for the financial capital's bitter income disparities -- with Dharavi's estimated one million people scraping a living as factory workers or maids and chauffeurs to Mumbai's well-heeled residents. With a dozen people typically sleeping in a single room, and hundreds using the same public toilet, authorities realised early that standard practices would be of little use. "Social distancing was never a possibility, home isolation was never an option, and contact tracing was a huge problem with so many people using the same toilet," Dighavkar told AFP. But  news on COVID front of the State of Maharashtra   is not all that positive !

With the number of Covid-19 cases rising rapidly every day, the Uddhav Thackeray-led government in Maharashtra has decided to extend the statewide lockdown till July 31.   Mumbai has recorded 1,487 new coronavirus cases and 73 COVID-19 related deaths in the last 24 hours. The total COVID-19 cases tally in Mumbai now stands at 79,145 and the death toll is 4,631.  Maharashtra continues to remain India’s worst-affected state. Coronavirus cases in Maharashtra have increased by 5,537 in the last 24 hours taking the total COVID-19 tally to 1.8 lakh. The state has also recorded 198 COVID-19 related deaths on Wednesday taking the death toll to 8,000  .. .. and the effect is now felt in Aug 2020 !

ஹிந்துக்களால் மிகவும் உற்சாகத்துடன் கொண்டாடப்படும் பண்டிகைகளில் முக்கியமானது விநாயகர் சதுர்த்தி.     ஈசனின் மகனுமான விநாயகர் அவதரித்த தினமான விநாயகர் சதுர்த்தி விழா ஒவ்வொரு வருடமும் ஆவணி மாதத்தின் வளர்பிறை சதுர்த்தி நாள் அன்று கொண்டாடப்படுகிறது.

Pillaiyar is found everywhere – on the banks of river and below Peepal trees – it is Vinayaka everywhere.  The  Karpaka Vinayaka Temple or Pillaiyarpatti Pillaiyar Temple is an ancient rock-cut cave shrine dedicated to Lord Ganesha, located at Pillayarpatti in Tiruppathur Taluk, Sivaganga district in the state of Tamil Nadu.  Pilliyarpatti is located 12 kilometers far, east to Tiruppathur, 3 kilometers far, west to Kundrakudi Murugan temple and 16 km far, west to Karaikudi, and 47 km far, north-east towards Sivaganga town, the district head-quarters ~ and there are tens of thousands of temples dedicated to Vinayaka in every nook of the country.

The celebrations done with religious fervour at home, became a major social and public event after the sponsorship of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj following the Mughal-Maratha wars. The festival gained further prominence when it was publicly supported in the 19th century by the Indian freedom fighter, Lokmanya Tilak, who championed it as a means to evade colonial British government ban in Hindu gatherings through its anti-public assembly legislation in 1892.  This year Vinayaka chathurthi falls on  Sat 22nd Aug 2020.

As the country battles coronavirus, Maharashtra has reported the highest number of positive cases and deaths. This may force organisers of the annual Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations to postpone the 2020 event. This is to minimise the infection spread since this event sees heavy public gathering across the pandals (event ground) across Mumbai, Pune and other regions

Lalbaugcha  Raja (The King of Lalbaug) is the most famous Sarvajanik Ganapati kept at Lalbaug, a prominent locality in Mumbai during the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. The idol is kept for public display for 11 days; thereafter it is immersed on the auspicious day of Anant Chaturdashi. This  idol of Lord Ganesha is Navsacha Ganpati ("one who fulfills all wishes") and hence over 1.5 million people visit this Ganesh Pandal daily during the festivities.
The 'mandal' was founded because of a vow  for construction of the present Lalbaug Market at its existing place. The marketplace at Peru Chawl was shut down in 1932. Hence, the fishermen and vendors who used to sit in the open place vowed to Ganesha for permanent place for their market. With the consistent efforts and support of a group of people, the landlord Rajabai Tayyabali agreed to give a plot for construction of a market. As fulfillment of their wish, the fisherman and traders established the Ganesh idol on 12 September 1934. The idol was dressed in the customary fashion of fisherman. Since that day, this idol of has become popular as He fulfills the wishes of devotees. The mandal was formed in the era when the freedom struggle was at its peak. 

Now comes the news that  Mumbai's famous Lalbaugcha Raja Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal has decided not to hold any festivities this year in the view of ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 

Several Ganesh Mandals have already decided to have low key celebrations this year, while many have even canceled plans. This year, instead of the Ganesh Festival, the Mandal has decided to celebrate 'Aarogya Usav' by setting-up a blood and plasma donation camp. The Mandal is already involved in various social activities and has been conducting medical health check-ups and blood donation camps. The mandal has also decided to donate Rs 25 lakh to the Chief Minister's Fund. The plasma donations camp will be held along the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). During the festival period, the Mandal will also felicitate the families of police personnel who died due to COVID-19 while being on the duty. Every year, to take darshan at Lalbaugcha Raja, people from across the country stand in a queue for hours to get a glimpse at the idol.

It is one famous  Mandal where the big names from Bollywood, politics and business too pay a visit every year. Another prominent Mandal - Lalbaug Sarvajanik Utsav Mandal - has decided that there will be no 'Utsav murti' and will bring-in only a four-foot idol, while online darshan will be organised so people can take part in the Ganeshotsav from their homes. GSB Mandal of Wadala too has announced its decision to postpone its Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations to February 2021. Two days ago, addressing the state, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has said that Ganesh idols will be of only 4-feet and there will no procession.

In the back drop of Covid 19 affecting people, the decision of the authorities needs to be appreciated.
We will wait for Lalbaugcha Raja
गणपति बाप्पा मोरया, मंगल मूर्ति मोरया।

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
Pics from twitter.

No comments:

Post a Comment