For the past 50 years, every Ganesh Chaturthi, Mohankumar Dodecha (66) pays a unique tribute to the city’s most loved deity.
A month before the city brings Lord Ganesh home, Dodecha begins work on a Ganpati rangoli made from sabudana (sago) at Mulund.
Months before the festival, the image to be drawn is finalised and the sabudana coloured. Dodecha and his friends then start on the sprawling rangoli.
This year, Dodecha made it to both the Limca Book of Records and Guinness Book of World Records for making the sabudana rangoli every year for 50 years.
“He was just 17 when he began this with his friends Dayaram Hindisota and Bhupender Joshi in 1961. They are still by his side; his passion has not dwindled,” said Meghjibhai, Dodecha’s elder brother.
Surrounded by 60 kg of sabudana coloured in different shades, Dodecha recalled the time he began in a small room that he shared with his parents. “We had to shift to the terrace when I would start, but my parents were always supportive. Today, when I see my grandchildren fascinated by it, it is immensely satisfying,” said Dodecha, who worked every day for 11 hours for the past month to complete his work in time for Ekadashi, which is on September 20.
Dodecha is marking the golden jubilee of the effort with a Siddhivinayak rangoli. It will measure 12 feet by 7 feet and will require approximately 12 lakh sabudana grains. He will use 250 to 300 colours.
Yet, for Dodecha, the quest for perfection has not ended. “I always think something or the other is missing. I will continue till I am satisfied,” he said.