For the tech-savvy devout, celebrating the upcoming Ganeshotsav in an eco-friendly manner just got easier. A free mobile application launched on Tuesday offers extensive information on ways to observe the 10-day festival in a green way.
Called ‘Eco Bappa’, the one-of-its-kind Android app has been prepared by Pratik Jadhav, a Ghatkopar-based green enthusiast, in collaboration with the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB). Jadhav, an event manager who has been running a dedicated website called ecofriendlyganesha.com for five years, said, “With increasing awareness about ecology, the website was getting popular every festival. Many people were writing to us asking for a related app. Seeing the demand, we decided to develop one.”
Users can access data on the number of eco-friendly idol makers across the state including Mumbai, Navi Mumbai, Pune, Thane, Aurangabad, Palghar and Raigad. Idol makers who use natural clay and the papier mache technique are listed on the app, with their location and contact numbers. “The data was provided by the pollution control board. In all, 42 idol makers are mentioned as of now, and we have appealed to other to get themselves listed,” he said.
There is also information available about 22 artificial ponds for immersing Ganesh idols that the municipal body creates across Mumbai. Also, the app elaborates on ways to celebrate a green festival at home. “Using images of similar celebrations in the past, we have elaborated on how idols can be created out of even vegetables and fruits, which is innovative and eco-friendly,” said Jadhav.
The app is currently available in Marathi, but the English and Hindi versions will be operational soon, he said, sharing that he took the help of three students – two pursuing engineering and one a degree in Commerce – to develop the app. It took the team a month to put together information.
Sanjay Bhuskute, MPCB official and spokesperson, said, “It’s perhaps the first mobile app in India which contains ways to celebrate any festival in an environmentally responsible way. We hope citizens will avail of its benefits.”