This year, the civic body has, for the first time, launched a scheme to provide compensation to organisers in case of accidents during the Ganpati immersion on the final day of the festival.
“In case of death at the visarjan spot, we will offer a compensation of Rs. 1.5 lakh, and in case of injuries, the injured will be provided treatment in a civic hospital for up to Rs. 15,000,” said Ram Dhas, chief accountant (finance), Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). “The amount was decided by a standing committee last month,” he said.
“This is the first time the civic body has brought out this scheme,” said mayor Sunil Prabhu. “A similar compensation was offered during dahi handi celebrations this year.
While the organisers’ worries during immersion have been taken care of by the civic body, some insurance companies are offering a comprehensive insurance policy to help them through the 10-day festival, given the large crowds at mandals and the expensive gold ornaments on the idols.
Oriental Insurance Company, a public undertaking, has brought out a policy, designed by Chaz Insurance Brokers, that offers a package to insure everything from gold ornaments, protection from terrorism, accidents, natural calamities and even insurance for volunteers.
“Earlier, several smaller mandals did not opt for insurance due to the high premium,” said Sachin Khanvilkar, administrative officer of the insurance firm.
“Our insurance cover will encourage more mandals to opt for it since the premium is very affordable at Rs. 3,000 for a total insurance amount Rs. 31 lakh,” he said.
“We introduced the scheme last year, and about 25 organisers opted for it. This year, we are expecting more organisers to approach us,” said Aasawari Desai, general manager, Chaz Insurance Brokers.