A day after the Ganpati Visarjan, in the wee hours of early morning, Juhu beach, located in suburban Mumbai wakes up to, quite an unpleasant sight. The beach, popular with the Visarjan procession lays bare as a witness, to the brunt of the extravagant and emotional adieu the city gave to its favorite deity.
Later in the day, the entire stretch of the beach exhibits half broken bodies of idol all piled up around the beach, as groups of young men drag the other lot from the sea of filthy brown water waves carrying polythene, thermocol and paint crashes by.
This is not just the story of Juhu beach, but of all those water bodies that been subjected to incalculable pollution during the festive season in the city. Chowpatty beach, at a distance of 1km drive from Marine Drive, is another spot that has been regarded as a favored venue for the devotees. For years this has become a common sight for the Mumbaikers who treat it as a common occurrence to happens after every festival.
It is in such situations that the Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) faces one of their toughest and never ending challenges of cleaning up the city. But with experience of the same state of affairs over years, they immediate set to the task and conduct huge clean up drives. Loaders are appointed to carry the large statues that is to be disposed off while the smaller remnants are raked up by the volunteers.
In this case the general public also plays a very big part, assisting the municipality and also maintaining their civic duty. Undeterred and unflinchingly, the city goers take full responsibility and come out together to work towards bringing back the ecological stability of the city. The huge mass clean- drive is joined by enthusiastic students from various schools and colleges, NGO members, government civic officials, along with volunteers. Age is not a matter when even the elderly come out and join the activity with utmost sincerity as the debris not only is an ugly sight but also hurts sentiments of the devotees to look at the idols of their deities lying around like garbage.
In pursuit of the clean city and environment support, WheresMyPandit has also joined hands with civic bodies and will run the cleaning drives at various visarjan locations in Mumbai.
The consciousness of the movement reaches as far as high society of the who’s who of Mumbai. Celebrities and ministers, also get into the dirt to clean up the choas, which accelerates the advertising of the cause and attracting more and more individuals to join it.
With over 6000 idols commissioned every year to Mumbai, the job of cleaning the remnants of the Visarjan can be quite tough job but that doesn’t affect the decisiveness of the Marathi manoos to make up for the disarray of the city’s organization. Though the invention of artificial ponds and several other green measures has been a welcome boon for the city however still a large population of worshippers remain undeterred by the fact of the festivals polluting the environment to a great extent.