Visakhapatnam: Ganesh Chaturthi is round the corner and sculptors across Vizag are busy getting their act together for finishing the idols before time.
While Ganesh idols taller than 60 feet is not new in Vizag, this time Vizagites will get to pay their obeisance to more than half a dozen such humongous Ganesh idols. Gajuwaka and Dondapa-rthy Ganesh idols gained fame earlier, especially in 2012 when the more than 80 feet tall Dondaparthy’s Ganesh towered the renowned Khairatabad Ganesh idol of Hyderabad.
However, this time there are many more such idols which would be crossing the 60 feet mark. Some of these would be located at, Waltair bus depot, Nakka-vanipalem, Old TB hospital junction, Marripalem along with the ones at Gajuwaka and Dondapa-rthy. The idol at Dondapa-rthy is set to cross 70 feet mark even this year.
While it has been a norm either to build the idol in nearby areas like Anakapalle and get it transported to Vizag or to bring in sculptors from West Bengal or Odisha for the purpose, this time many idols are being built on the spot by sculptors from Andhra Pradesh.
Gurunath, one of the organisers of Ganesh festivities near Waltair bus depot area where the Ganesh idol is to be of 62 feet, says, “There are 11 workers from Anakapalle who have been working on this idol since first week of August. ”
Such a tall idol was not constructed earlier in the area. When asked if there is any sense of competition with other areas, Gurunath said, “It is not about competition. While such tall idols have been existent in other parts of Vizag, we fishermen folk had never had such tall Ganesh idol in our area before.”
It is just to show our devotion to the lord.”
The idols do not come cheap. The one near Waltair depot costs more than rupees five lakhs which includes just labour and material costs. For decorations and maintenance Gurunath said that it might cost an addition of rupees five lakhs including cost of immersion of the idol which will be done on the spot.