Sena to meet CM over ban on PoP for making Ganesh idols

Mumbai, Feb 12 (PTI) Opposing the Bombay High Court''sban on the use of Plaster of Paris (PoP) for making Ganeshidols, Shiv Sena leaders would soon meet Maharashtra ChiefMinister Prithviraj Chavan with grievances of idol makers.

Party Executive President Uddhav Thackeray todayconvened a meeting of idol makers at Sena Bhavan to discusstheir problems in backdrop of the ban on environment ground.

The ban was imposed by the Aurangabad bench of theBombay HC on Tuesday on a public interest litigation (PIL)filed by Narendra Dabholkar, president of the MaharashtraAndhashraddha Nirmulan Samiti (MANS), in 2005.

The court had ordered that Ganesh idols be made byusing soil and natural colours and warned that criminal caseswould be registered if anyone violates the ban.

"We will meet the Chief Minister and ask him if hisGovernment has any policy on celebrating the Ganesh festival,"the Sena leader said while addressing the meeting.

Maintaining that the ban hurts the Hindu sentiments,Uddhav said MANS, which campaigns against superstitions, hadno business to interfere in Hindu festivals. The festival isbeing celebrated for years and so far there had been nocomplaint about its environment hazards, he said.

However, last year the Sena-ruled BrihanMumbaiMunicipal Corporation (BMC) initiated a campaign for eco-friendly Ganesh idols to reduce environment impact. The BMCmakes arrangement for artificial ponds every year forimmersion of idols to avoid sea, river or lake pollution.

Over three lakh households and 25,000 mandalscelebrate Ganesh festival. About 45,000 people in the statedepend on the festival for their livelihood.

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