Ganesh Chaturthi is one of the biggest Indian festivals which commemorates the birth of Lord Ganesha. People celebrate this auspicious festival with a lot of fervor and enthusiasm. Fondly called as Ganpati Bappaor elephant god is considered as the God of beginnings and the remover of obstacles. Many actors also bring home the idol and invite all their family and friends. This occasion is the harbinger of prayers, unity, peace, loads of good food, and warm get-togethers.
The situation this year seems to be different than usual restricting the mass celebration, but in no way has dampened the spirit of the festival and its devotees. Here is a glimpse of how the actors of Dangal Channel are celebrating Ganesh Utsav 2020 by adapting to the new normal.
Dayashankar Pandey – Mahima Shani Dev Ki
Pandemic has taught me the importance of our environment and therefore, for the first time in 12 years, I will be bringing an eco-friendly idol of Ganpati at my place. This year, due to rules and regulations, the height of our idol will be 2 feet instead of 4 feet so that the immersion can happen conveniently within my building premises. We won’t be stepping out for visarjan to maintain social distancing. Usually, Ganesh Chaturthi is a grand celebration at our place, but, keeping in mind the situation, this year we will have a low-key celebration. Only close relatives will be coming home for darshan. Sanitizers and other precautionary measures will be taken care of. I will be personally sending photographs of the idol to all those who won’t be able to visit us. Also, our pandit ji who does the pooja is currently at his hometown in Uttar Pradesh and therefore he will recite the mantras through mobile phone. This year, we will keep our decorations also simple. Packed packets of prasad will be kept for the devotees who visit us to avoid risk factors. The thing that I will miss the most this year is meeting and spending time with my friends during the festival. I pray and hope Lord Ganesha, our Vighnaharta, puts an end to our sufferings due to coronavirus.
Sneha Wagh - Jyoti
Being a Maharashtrian, Ganesh Chaturthi is a big festival for us. It is a festival where the entire family comes together. Generally, Ganpati Sthaapna happens at the eldest member in the family and all the families meet there. However this year things will be very different and dull. This year would be the first-ever Ganpati where the celebration would be so subdued. I will miss the music, people dancing on the streets, the home visits, and overall the entire vibe of the festival. On the other hand everybody is conscious and safety for everyone comes first and therefore there will be no or minimal travel. At the max, one representative from each family would go and pay respect. I would also like to make a sincere request to everybody who celebrates Ganesh Chaturthi in a big way to be extremely careful about their movement which will not only be safe for themselves but also their family members. We should ensure we do not get carried away and be sensible with our devotion to Lord Ganesha.
Aparna Dixit – Pyar Ki Luka Chuppi
I am very excited about Ganesh Chaturthi. But this year we have to be extra careful because of the pandemic situation and should avoid mass gatherings while celebrating this festival. Talking about my memories, when I moved into this city, I saw that people are very enthusiastic about this festival. Feeling that energy, I became very excited to celebrate the festival every year. I make sure I visit every friend's house who brings home the idol even if I am busy with my shoots, But this year I'm going to miss all that. I am sure everyone is going to miss the dhol, dance, and gathering during Ganpati visarjan. But this year I will not encourage this. It is necessary to avoid huge celebrations and gathering as safety comes first. I request everyone to please take care of yourself and be safe. We will celebrate this festival with pure devotion and faith. I wish you all a very happy Ganesh Chaturthi.
Pooja Singh – Aye Mere Humsafar
I have had the good fortune to visit and pray to the very famous Lalbaugcha raja. Over the years I have always visited all my friends who bring Bappa home. I really like the concept of Ganesh Chaturthi and the feeling of festivity which comes with it as it gives everyone, family, and friends an opportunity to take a break from an extremely busy life and visit each other, even though it is just once a year. This year it is going to be different as this is the first time I would be getting Bappa home. When I had first came to Mumbai, I had promised Bappa that when I become an actor and buy my own house I will bring him home. With his blessings, this year that dream has been fulfilled. While I have kept an open invite to all family and friends and as much I would love them to come to visit my new house and meet Bappa I am also very conscious of everyone’s safety. I would also request everyone to be safe and not venture out Pandal hopping. I'm sure Bappa would like us to be sensible and not add to the existing crisis. We should reserve our energies for next year and celebrate with double the enthusiasm. I will be praying to Lord Ganesha that he helps us find a solution to the current situation.
Alan Kapoor – Pyar Ki Luka Chuppi
Every year, I generally visit my friends who bring Bappa home. For some years I had also brought Ganpati home and had one of the most purifying experiences. Other than praying to Lord Ganesha, this festival gives us a reason to meet many friends at least once a year. I really love this occasion and feel this gives us an opportunity to unite with one another. However this year things will be different. Unfortunately, we will not be able to celebrate it with the same zeal and fervor in groups, but the feelings within each individual will remain the same. I would urge all devotees of Lord Ganesha to be conscious and use only eco-friendly Ganesh Idols. Using non-degradable material has a very grave impact on marine life and I’m sure Bappa wouldn’t want us to trouble any other species. I am a huge fan of all people who have been so innovative in making eco-friendly idols and totally support them for their creativity. For all those who are planning to move out at pandals or visit their family and friends, it’s a request to please abide by the safety guidelines and avoid gathering in groups to ensure we celebrate this lovely festival safely.
Rahul Sharma – Pyar Ki Luka Chuppi
Like every year, I will follow the regular rituals of worshiping Lord Ganesha. In fact, back home in Rajasthan, the boys apply henna on this occasion. So even I used to do it till I was around 16 years old. After moving here, I couldn't keep an idol at home as I live alone, but I used to visit all my friends' places and enjoyed the tasty prasad and food after worshiping the Lord. So it was a lot of fun to meet everyone, to visit and see beautiful idols, etc. But this year, of course, that will not be possible. I hope we can meet Bappa next year. To all those who are bringing home the idol, I request y'all to bring eco-friendly idols. It will help the environment and you can also immerse the idol at home which will help you stay safe from the corona. Please take all the precautions and enjoy the festival safely.
Sheetal Maulik – Pyar Ki Luka Chuppi
I will visit my closest friends who bring idols to their place. Whoever I cannot meet I will make sure to take Bappa's darshan through video calls. I will at least try to attend the aarti of the idol brought in my housing society. This year we cannot meet many people. We cannot visit different houses and big pandals for darshan.I will miss the crowd, dhol, dance, visarjan, that entire festive mood, dressing up, going out and so many more things. But I think during this pandemic we have to go with the flow and think about our safety first. I adore this festival a lot. I love to celebrate in a grand way but I will suggest everyone this year to stay at home. It is not necessary to go and meet Lord Ganesha but to try and pray with all the faith. Our prayers will be heard. Please be at home, be safe, and please take care of yourself. I wish you all a very Happy Ganesh Chaturthi!
Hemant Thatte – Aye Mere Humsafar
We bring an eco-friendly idol of Lord Ganesh every year and we will be doing the same this year as well. Initially, we used to go to a near-by artificially pond to immerse the idol, but since last year we like to do it on our own terrace. It is our small step to save the environment. It is one festival we all wait for all year round but I would urge the people to stay home this year and not gather and visit a lot of places. And to take care of themselves. And to all those who bring Lord Ganesh to their homes, I would request them to bring only eco-friendly idols and immerse them in artificial ponds. This will help us take one big step towards a healthier environment.
Well, it is safe to say that nothing can stop one from celebrating this auspicious festival. We hope that prayers are answered by Bappa soon and life resumes back to normal once again. May the blessings of Lord Ganesha always showers upon us.
Ganpati Bappa Morya!