Madurai: As the city gears up for the Ganesh Chaturthi festival, eco-friendly idols of Lord Ganesha are being prepared in Tamil Nadu’s Madurai district. Hundreds of artisans reside in Vilachery village, near Tiruparangunram in Madurai, where the idols are being prepared using clay and elephant dung. However, heavy rainfall in the district has led to difficulties for the artisans. Vijay Kumar, an idol artisan told ANI,
We traditionally make Ganesha idols out of clay. This year we have received very few orders. Now that the rainy season has started, the tile-making industry has stagnated a little which has affected us.
Another artisan said,
We have been in the Ganesha idol-making business for 34 years. We prepare Ganesha idols naturally using clay and elephant dung. These idols do not cause any harm to the environment. But now it is very difficult to make an idol if there is no soil available.
The Ganesh Chaturthi festival, which falls in the Bhadrapada month of the Hindu calendar, marks the birthday of Lord Ganesha, son of Shiva and Parvati.
Also known as Vinayak Chaturthi or Ganeshotsav, the festival is marked with the installation of Ganesha’s clay idols privately in homes and publicly on elaborate pandals (temporary stage).
The 10-day festival ends when the idol is carried in a public procession with music and group chanting, then immersed in a nearby body of water such as a river or sea, called visarjan on the day of Anant Chaturdashi.
The festival celebrates Ganesha as the God of New Beginnings and the Remover of Obstacles as well as the god of wisdom and intelligence. This year the Ganesh Chaturthi festival will begin on September 19 and will continue for ten days until September 29.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – the LGBTQ population, indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fight malnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health, adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF)status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.