It’s that time of the year again when super-busy actors joins hands to welcome Lord Ganpati. We got some of the stars to share their thoughts on the festival, which the city celebrates with gusto.
At my parents’ house, we’ve been bringing Ganpati for the last 53 years. My grandfather started the tradition and my father carried it forward. It's the most fun time for us because our whole family and extended family get together for the celebration. My mom makes the yummiest modaks. Now with our kids around, there’s even more joy and excitement. In fact, we all go to get our Ganpati the previous night and shout slogans on the road. It’s super fun. I enjoy it and so do my children.
Ihave started keeping Ganpati since last year. It’s a tribute to Maharashtra as I completed a decade of being in Mumbai. I embraced this part of the local culture as the state has given me immense love and respect. The most beautiful memory I have is from last year during visarjan, when my mom burst into tears and said to me, ‘You have turned out so well, my child. I’m proud to be your mother.’
We have been celebrating the festival for around 15 years now. We bring Ganpati home for one-and-a-half day, but the preparations begin a month in advance. Last year, we had some 300 guests at home. It was huge and wonderful. Most of the time, I lose my voice. We celebrate with full gusto. Once Ganesha goes away, the house seems empty.
Since the last 15 years, I have been keeping Ganpati. In my hometown in Madhya Pradesh, I would keep the idol for 11 days, but since I’ve moved to Mumbai, I keep it for five days.We would make different ‘jhakis’ (tableaus) every day. We would collect donations from our locality to buy the Ganesha idol. While some people would give us a lot of money, others would scream at us. It was all fun. We would entertain people who came to visit by wearing costumes of Hanuman, a ‘bhalu’ (bear) etc with dholwalas on the side.
We don’t get Ganpati at home but I end up going to my friend’s place. I make sure I visit Siddhivinayak temple to offer my prayers and take the Lord’s blessings. Also, my family and I visit my aunt since her family keeps Ganesha at their place. So it becomes a family affair for us. On the last day of the festival, my friends and I go to watch the Ganpati pandals all over, gorge on the amazing food and watch the visarjan of the idols.