Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], September 9 (ANI): Amidst the restrictions imposed by the Maharashtra government on public celebrations of Ganesh Chaturthi in view of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, people in Mumbai were seen making last-minute preparations as they visited markets to take home Lord Ganesha idol and decorative materials for the festival.
While expressing disappointment for not being able to celebrate Ganeshotsav with full fervour in the wake of the pandemic, the people were also relieved to be able to at least celebrate the festival at home, unlike last year.
"Last year we could not celebrate Ganeshotsav. This year, though with restrictions, we are going to celebrate the festival and welcome Bappa (Lord Ganesha) at home," said Shweta who was shopping in the Lalbaug market of Mumbai.
"Bappa is called 'Vighnaharta' (one who takes away all the problems). This festival is very important for us as worshipping Bappa takes away one's sorrows and brings happiness," she added.
Lalit, another person visiting the market, said that the celebrations will not be the same as earlier because of Covid-19 but following the guidelines is also necessary in view of the possible third wave.
"This year, we are going to pray Bappa to eliminate Covid-19 from the world," he stated.
The Maharashtra government on Thursday issued fresh orders that the devotees will not be allowed to visit Ganpati Pandals physically and arrangements should be made for digital darshan through Webcast or any other mode.
Mumbai Mayor Kishori Pednekar also appealed to people to follow the Covid-19 guidelines amidst the celebrations and told them to follow 'Majha Ghar, Majha Bappa' (My Home, My Bappa) and celebrate the festival at their homes only.
Meanwhile, the Lalbaugcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal will be celebrating Ganeshotsav in a traditional way adhering to all Covid-19 related guidelines and restrictions.
Last year, Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal, for the first time in history, refrained from holding the festivities in the wake of the pandemic.
This year Ganeshotsav of Lalbaugcha will be organised by the Mandal from September 10 to 19 September.
The Maharashtra government had earlier issued guidelines to restrict the height of the Ganesha idols to upto four feet and urged people to carry out the festivities by following Covid protocols and avoid crowding.
The government had also directed Ganeshotsav Mandals to seek prior permission from the local administration.
Ganesh Chaturthi, a 10-day festival that starts on the fourth day of the Hindu lunisolar calendar month Bhadrapada, will start on September 10 this year. (ANI)