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By Soumyadipta Banerjee 

Mumbai: Bollywood is celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi with the rest of Mumbai. Even though actor Salman Khan is away in the US, his family is celebrating Ganapati festival in his house.

“What if bhai is not here, the celebrations will go on. His mom and the others are here to ensure that the puja is carried out the way it is carried out in all other years,” said a member of the Khan family.

The other celebrities like Vidya Balan, Ekta Kapoor, Rani Mukerji, Lata Mangeshkar, Akshay Kumar, Shilpa Shetty and Nana Patekar also organised a Ganesh Puja at their house.

“The puja at Ekta’s house is being held with a lot of pomp and spendour. She has also fasted for the arrival of Lord Ganesha,” says a close friend of the actor.

Shilpa also offered a special puja for the evening as part of the rituals while Lata Mangeshkar took the lead for the evening aarti. 
Bollywood celebrities like Neha Dhupia and Sonam Kapoor took the lead and donated paper through the NGO to promote awareness for the environment conscious.

 

SUDESH BHOSLE, Singer 
As a singer, I begin all my concerts, song recordings with His name.Whatever I have achieved today – name and fame – I attribute it to the Lord. I share myriad relationships with him, be it that of a friend, father, brother and mentor. My faith in him has become stronger with time! Every year we celebrate Ganeshotsav at my elder sister’s residence, the entire family meets and we all cook together and sing together and pray.We have been inviting friends over to our pooja for three decades now. Ganesh is our Lord and He is supreme. He is my conscience, my soul, the beginning and the end; He is everything! 

MANASI PAREKH GOHIL Actor and singer 
For me Ganpati as a figure is very enchanting and mystical. He is one of the most interesting Gods – half man and half elephant. He is the God of prosperity and before starting anything new, the first ritual is to remember Lord Ganesha. My relationship with Lord Ganesha that has not changed but my perspective has changed a lot. We all meet and cherish good times and as Ganesha spread so much happiness. More than faith, for me Ganesha is a God that exudes positive vibes. Every morning I like to listen to the Ganpati shlokas. 

My mom has planned for us to do a puja at GSB Grounds, King’s Circle. I am happy to be part of the celebration and puja. 

ANGAD HASIJA, Actor 
I share a close relationship with Ganesha, he is my Lord. I have great faith in Him. Over the years our bond has become much stronger. Few years ago, when I came to Mumbai I lived in a rented home and took a mannat that when I have my own home I shall keep His idol. For the last three years, I have been keeping Ganesha idol at home. Before the festival, I write a special invitation to Him and invite Him to my house and drop this invitation card at Siddhivinayak temple. He is my VIP guest and I and my family decorate our home in His honor and makes special sweets to welcome Him. He has bestowed His blessings on me I and I am thankful to Him. 

Aishwarya Sakhuja, Actor 
Ganesha is more like a friend than a God for me. He is my favourite deity. He is one of the few Gods who is always happy. In fact, for me Ganesha has not only been a friend throughout but more like a family member! I do have immense faith in Ganesha. For me the biggest miracle has been my health and the fact that I was born without any handicap. By Ganesha’s grace I have always got what I have wanted. The importance of Ganesha has just grown even more over the years for me! Unfortunately due to shooting, I can’t celebrate the festival elaborately. It’s such a huge festival especially here in Maharashtra! I love the way everybody comes out on the streets and dances and really celebrates with so much joy. However, I wish the festival could be more eco-friendly. 

Romit Raj, Actor 
Ganesha means a lot to me I look upon him as the supreme power. I pray every day to him; He is one God who is loved by all. I have a huge Ganesha idol at home gifted to me by my co-actors of ‘Betiyaan’. Ganesha blesses one with prosperity and peace. As a kid I developed confidence and my talent by performing in Ganeshotsav celebrations of the society in Lokhandwala where I lived.This year my wife and I plan to visit our friend’s home for darshan and seek Ganesha’s blessings.

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