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Ganesh festival: BMC makes it mandatory for Mumbaikars to immerse PoP idols in artificial lakes

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Mumbai, Jul 5: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has made it mandatory for citizens and organisers of various pandals during the forthcoming Ganesh festival this year to immerse the Plaster of Paris (PoP) idols only in artificial lakes.

In a release issued on Monday, the BMC also made it compulsory to mention on the idols that they are made of the 'Plaster of Paris', while giving permission for such idols this year as "a special case".

Artists carry a plaster of Paris (PoP) idol of Lord Ganesh

It also announced that there will be a complete ban on the PoP idols in the BMC's jurisdiction during the Ganesh festival in 2023. Last month, the civic body had announced a complete ban on the PoP idols in the city ahead of the Ganesh festival.

However, after a meeting on Monday with the Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samiti, an umbrella body of various Ganesh mandals, the civic body retracted its earlier decision. In the release, the BMC said for this year's Ganeshotsav, which will take place after two years of COVID-19 restrictions, as "a special case", permission has been given to buy and sell the PoP idols of Lord Ganesha.

But, there will be a "complete ban" on it from next year. "It will be mandatory to immerse the domestic Ganesh idols made of PoP in an artificial lake. It has also been made mandatory to mention 'Plaster of Paris' on these idols, so that they can be identified during immersion," the BMC said.

“There will be a complete ban on PoP idols in the BMC's jurisdiction from the 2023 Ganesh festival. It will be mandatory to buy and sell idols made only from environment-friendly material, like 'shadu clay', from next year," the release said quoting BMC zone-2 deputy commissioner Harshad Kale.

Kale also appealed that during this year's Ganesh festival, the height of domestic idols should not be more than two feet and the height of idols for public pandals should be as low as possible. For erecting the Ganpati pandals, the civic body will issue permissions online, through a single window system, the release said.

PTI

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