Amid helpings of bhog, crackers, prayers and the beats of the dhaaki (drums), devotees across the city said their final goodbyes to the Goddess on the last day of Durga Puja.
At Chowpatty beach in Girgaum, smaller idols that had been kept in family homes showed up early in the evening, while the larger murtis from the pandals arrived later.
“The house will feel empty now, we didn’t feel like bringing her for visarjan,” said Sandhya Chavan, 37, a housewife, who came for visarjan. The family keeps an idol in their home every year, since their wish for a daughter was granted 16 years ago.
Elsewhere on the beach, scores of yellow kurta-clad young men threw themselves into energetic rounds of garba.
The Bengal Club’s durga idol was taken by samiti members in full traditional style from Shivaji Park: on a bullock cart, without loudspeakers and to the beat of dhaakis. More than 3,000 people were part of the procession, with the visarjan taking place at Dadar chowpatty.
As durga idols of varying sizes and variously attired congregated slowly over the course of the evening at the city’s various immersion points, many devotees got ready to break their nine-day long fasts.
“So many of my friends have been going about their daily jobs as policemen even as they have fasted during the festival,” said Milind Juvekar, 32, a policeman whose police colony in Crawford Market has a Durga ever year.
As mandals dismantled their furniture and took down their decorations, devotees braced themselves for post-visarjan blues.
“Every moment of the festival has been special this year, it is hard to identify any one particular instance,” said Tanushree Bhattacharya, 23, who was celebrating her second durga puja in Mumbai after moving to the city in 2009.