By: Urvashi Seth, Mid-Day
Members of the Ganesh Mandals will be meeting traffic cops today, to request permission for immersion of idols at the water body adjacent to the reclaimed land
Mumbai: Finding it impossible to manage the swelling crowds of devotees at the immersion spots during Ganesh Chaturthi every year, the apex body of Ganesh Mandals have decided to renew their campaign to acquire permission for idol immersion in the water body at the Bandra Reclamation (BR).
Members of the Ganesh Mandal Samiti have scheduled a meeting with the Mumbai traffic cops today, to discuss the feasibility of this move.
Over the last few years, the Ganesh Mandal Samiti has been complaining about the unmanageable crowds at immersion spots like Dadar and Mahim beach, where devotees are forced to wait for long hours for immersion of Ganesh idols.
Last year, a team of representatives had made a presentation to the chief minister, but their camping had failed to bear fruit.
Speaking to MiD DAY, Naresh Dahibawkar, secretary of the Ganeshotsav Samanvay Samiti said, “For the last few years, we have been demanding that the Bandra Reclamation be added to the list of visarjan spots.
Unfortunately, our pleas and requests have fallen on deaf ears. We will be meeting the traffic cops today, and appeal to them to consider our recommendation. The traffic department plays a major role in management of crowds during the Ganeshotsav festival, manning traffic.”
Insisting that this would be in the interest of devotees, Dahibawkar said, “On the designated days for immersion, the devotees flock to the immersion spots at Shivaji Park and Mahim Chowpatty.
It is hazardous for devotees who have congregated. If immersions are allowed at water bodies adjacent to the BR, traffic will be distributed evenly. Moreover, BR has enough parking space to accommodate large crowds,” he said.
These requests bear echoes of those made by members of the Fishermen Organisation of Mahim a few years back, following reports on the deteriorating condition of the Dadar beach due to heavy immersion in its waters.
Commenting on the issue, Brijesh Singh, Additional Commissioner of police (Traffic) said, “We will have to study the location and the impact of the same on traffic. Only after studying the entire situation will we be able to say anything.”
Number of Ganesh idols immersed in 2010
Number of Ganesh idols immersed in 2009