Monday, September 20, 2004

In God’s name public make fest eco-friendly

In God’s name public make fest eco-friendly
The BMP, LDA and BDA’s ideas for eco-friendly immersion of Ganesha idols received a huge response.
Deccan Herald

Hundreds of Bangaloreans bid adieu to the elephant god, Ganesha, on Saturday and Sunday, without causing much damage to the precious water bodies of the city -- Sankey, Ulsoor, Yediyur and Lalbagh lake.

Unlike in the past, not a single idol was allowed to be immersed recklessly in the main tanks this time, with three civic agencies --Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BMP), Lake Development Authority (LDA) and Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) and Police -- making adequate arrangements for safe and clean immersion of idols.

Besides, mobile tanks introduced on an experimental basis in some areas, also proved to be successful. Nearly 70 per cent of idols that were brought to the Lalbagh lake were immersed in mobile tanks introduced by the BDA.

In Sankey, Ulsoor and Yediyur lake, which were restored recently, BMP along with the police put up barricades, restricting the movement of people around Kalyanis (immersion ponds). BMP personnel were also deputed to help devotees to immerse the idols.

Interestingly, the people seems to have accepted the new practice and were found co-operating with civic agencies. The devotees were made to immerse pooja materials such as flowers, gejje-vastra and the like in bins before immersing the idols. However, the devotees were not allowed to step into the tanks while immersing the idols.

“This is a civilised way of using public places. I never believed it when BMP said that it would not allow dumping of idols. I was taken by surprise to see this happening,” Bushan, a resident of Malleshwaram, said.

H Varun Kumar of Basaveshwaranagar, who immersed an idol in the mobile tank near Saneguruvanahalli tank, said: “It is a novel idea to introduce mobile tanks for immersion of idols. It does not pollute lakes and we do not have to travel long distances in search of lakes now,” he said.

Hanumappa shared the same opinion. “See, the whole place has remained clean unlike previous years. The flowers and other decorative materials have been put in the garbage bins specifically meant for them,” he said. Representatives of Vinayaka Yuva Bhakta Mandali of Rajajinagar who immersed their six-feet idol in the Sankey tank said, that the BMP and Lake Development Authority supervised the immersion process in an organised way. Children were not allowed to go near the immersion tanks, they said.

According to BMP’s estimate, over 80,000 idols were immersed in Sankey tank on Saturday and over 40,000 on Sunday. In Ulsoor lake, nearly 60,000 idols were immersed on both days, while nearly 30,000 and 2,000 Ganesha idols were bid adieu in Yediyur and Lalbagh lake respectively.

As many as 4,000 Ganesha idols were immersed in mobile tanks at Netaji Subashchandra Stadium near Saneguruvanahalli tank area, Vidyapeeta Circle, and near Koramangala BDA complex, officials said.


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