New Delhi: While Ganesh Chaturthi is about celebrating the Ekadanta lord's birth, a lot of effort goes in perfectly nestling the god into his makeshift abode. From Chandrayaan-2 themes to a simple flowery decoration, each devotee is in a race with another to put the best set-up together.
While popular culture has ample representation of Ganesh Chaturthi and its vibrant celebrations, a little is known about the beautiful, elegant themed decorations that Maharashtrians do before welcoming Vignaharta to their homes.
"Last year it was a cave-themed decor made of balloons and paper mache at my home, but this year it is Chandrayaan-2 as it has been in the news of late," said Rishabh, who owns a manufacturing business.
Well, Ganesh Chaturthi not only comes as a time of getting together with folks and loved ones but it also as to channel the inner artist. Rishabh, however, also believes it is unequivocal that the environment has to be kept in mind while preparing for Bappa's welcome.
"The decoration will be made out of a corroborated sheet, wooden material, chart paper and of course lights. It will be there until Ganesha visarjan," he said.
Rishabh's family welcomes the Ganpati idol home on energetic beats of a Dhol, after which a Pandit conducts the puja. Following which, Rishabh's guest will not only be treated to the sparkling decor but with also with a scrumptious Marwari lunch of Dal Baati and modaks filled with a paste of coconut and jaggery.
Ruchita, a third-year Journalism student from Pune's Seamedu Institute also has grand plans about bringing the deity home.
"Last year I created a replica of the famous Lalbaugcha Raja Ganpati in Mumbai," she said.
But this year her bags are packed as her family will be celebrating the festival in their village. Ruchita has selected the 'Baal Ganesha' theme and plans to bring in an idol of about 2 feet.
"My cousins and I have selected Baal Ganesha as this year's theme and will be making use of toys, cartoons, balloons and other colourful stuff," she said.
She even shared that the villagers are committed to some of their traditional celebration styles in which they bring home a plant signifying Devi Gauri which is placed beside the god of intellect. She is draped in a sari, decorated with jewelry.
"On the fourth day, we bring Gauri (actually a plant) and decorate her. She is later planted at the back of the house."
Meanwhile, another devotee Kailash Shinde, who works at Vikarta, Mumbai, will welcome Ganesha with a flowery and lively set-up.
"My family will be making use of flowers and cotton since plastic and thermocol items are banned in the state," said the father of two.
"After setting up the Ganpati, we'll perform aarti twice a day for five days till visarjan," he added.
While people are keeping the environment in mind and opting for eco-friendly idols made of mud and paper, for those still buying the old POP ones, artificial ponds have been created for visarjan.
A differently-abled Lavani dancer, Jyoti Mastekar, associated with Narayan Seva Sansthan is also going for flowers and eco-friendly items to prepare an eye-pleasing space to keep the idol.
"I will be celebrating the festival in my village and I am looking to make a simple and eco-friendly space for Bappa," she said....