New Delhi: From September 13, thousands and thousands of people across India will start chanting the traditional Ganpati songs as they will celebrate one of the biggest festivals of the year, Lord Ganesha’s birthday Ganesh Chaturthi. But, every year with Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations come huge environment risks – when several thousands of people choose to immerse the idols in the water after the 10-day festivities. Normally, the idols are made from Plaster of Paris (POP) and are non-biodegradable in nature, as a result, the idols even after immersion continues to float on the water for a long period of time thereby choking the water bodies and adversely impacting the aquatic ecosystem.
Apart from Plaster Of Paris, Ganesh Idols are decked up with heavy metal jewellery, decorations and hundreds of flower garlands. So, when the Ganesh idols are immersed in the water bodies, all this waste ends up polluting the already stressed rivers and oceans further.
This Ganesh Chaturthi, pledge to save the planet from the pollution and switch to eco-friendly alternatives, here are 5 green options to pick from:
Opt For Ganesh Idols That Grows Into A Plant From Tree Ganesha
Started by an artisan, Dattadri Kothur in Mumbai, Tree Ganesha is today a well-known eco-friendly alternative among celebrities and people across India. The idols are made from red soil, organic fertilizer, and natural colour. The unique feature is that the Ganesh Idol from Tree Ganesha has a seed inside that can be grown into a plant by placing the idol in a pot with soil and watering it regularly.
Tree Ganesha idols price range starts from Rs 2,200 and it is available for purchase on their official site for people across India.
Go For Ganesh Idols Made From Recycled Paper And Environmentally Safe To Immerse In Water Bodies
To give people a green alternative to traditional Ganpati idols, 38-year-old Rohit Vaste, a Mumbai-based artist started sculpting eco-friendly Ganesh idols using clay, organic glue, and waste paper.
To make a Ganesh idol, first, the paper is divided into bits and then mixed with clay to make the dough. Then the dough is molded to give the idol its shape, once the sculpture is ready, it is draped with a layer of recycled paper using organic glue. Even the paint used is not toxic in nature.
Available in a price range from Rs 2,100 to Rs 20,000, these green idols can be ordered through the artist’s online venture ‘paperganesh.com’ by people across India.
Choose A Fish-Friendly Ganesh Idol That Is Made Using Cow-Dung
32-year-old Nilesh Tupe, a resident of Nerul, Maharashtra is saving the environment from the ill effects of Plaster of Paris by making Ganpati idols from cow dung that when immersed in water bodies produces oxygen and manure which when consumed by marine animals is harmless.
The waste warrior is currently selling these Ganesh idols from his home to people of Maharashtra at a price range of Rs. 100 to Rs. 2200.
A Ganesh Idol Made Using All Things Natural
Green Practises, a company that was founded by the mother of two, with an aim to fight climate pollution and helps save the environment for the next generation. With this agenda in mind, Green Practises started making 100% natural Ganpati idols for one of the biggest festivals of the year – Ganesh Chaturthi. The idols made by the company are eco-friendly alternatives to the traditional Plaster of Paris idols, these are made using Multani Matti, Haldi, Kumkum and other natural colours that can dissolve in water within 30 to 40 minutes.
The products are available for purchase across India at a cost price of Rs 2300 from the official website of the company.
Keep It Simple – Go For Clay Ganesha
Last but not the least, Green Ganesha idols are also value for money and traditional – there are many benefits of using a clay Ganesh, it is 100% biodegradable and can easily get dissolved when immersed in water.
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swachh India campaign lends support to the Government of India’s Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM). Helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan, the campaign aims to spread awareness about hygiene and sanitation, the importance of building toilets and making India open defecation free (ODF) by October 2019, a target set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, when he launched Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in 2014. Over the years, the campaign has widened its scope to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and menstrual hygiene. The campaign has also focused extensively on marine pollution, clean Ganga Project and rejuvenation of Yamuna, two of India’s major river bodies.