Tradition upheld as Ganesh idol from Pune’s Babu Genu Mandal installed at Srinagar’s Lal chowk
As a part of an 18-yr-old tradition of installing a Ganpati idol in Srinagar’s Lal Chowk on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi, an idol from Pune’s Babu Genu Mandal was carried by a representative of the social organisation Sarhad amidst close coordination with government officials.
The Ganesh idol was ceremoniously installed inside Hanuman Temple at Lal Chowk, Srinagar on Monday at around 1pm.
Initially ten volunteers from Pune had planned to accompany the idol to Srinagar but had to cancel their visit due to the prevailing security situation in the aftermath of the abrogation of article 370 in the erstwhile state.
Finally, a representative of Sarhad accompanied the idol, said Sanjay Nahar, founder of the social organisation which played a key role in organising the transportation of the idol to Srinagar.
The Lal Chowk area of Srinagar has nearly 300 Maharashtrian families which celebrate the 10 day Ganesh Chaturthi festival, he said.
“The installation of the Ganesh idol at Hanuman Mandir has been a part of our tradition of bringing about unity in society which we have been doing successfully for more than a decade. The 10 day festival promotes cultural integration of J&K with the rich Ganesh tradition of Maharashtra.
The Ganesh idol was flown to Srinagar by writer Sanjay Sonawni in the presence of senior IPS officer Pandurang Pole. The idol will be immersed on the final day in the Jhelum,” Nahar said.
This year, the idol for Srinagar was presented by Babu Genu Mandal president Balasaheb Marne, he said.
Given the high security in parts of J&K, Sarhad had sought assistance from the administration of the newly-created union territory for conducting the puja.
The administration promised complete assistance, said Nahar, founder of the 23-year-old ‘Sarhad’ which has provided humanitarian support to children from Jammu and Kashmir.
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