Lord Ganpati, with the head of an elephant, can well be considered as the ultimate example of organ transplantation. Keeping this in mind, several Ganesh mandals this year are planning to plan their festivities around the theme of organ donation, and spread awareness about the issue.
Mandals in the city thought of promoting this cause after the death of former CM Vilasrao Deshmukh from multiple organ failure. They want to spread awareness and associate this cause with the Elephant God, who, as Vighnaharta, is known to banish troubles plaguing his devotees.
The Fort Vibhag Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav mandal has joined hands with the Zonal Transplantation Coordination Committee (ZTCC) this year to promote the cause and spread awareness about the importance of organ donation.
11 members of the mandal have registered themselves with ZTCC and will promote the cause through pamphlets and
banners during the Ganpati festival.
The mandal will install a booth outside the pandal, where devotees coming for darshan can register themselves with the ZTCC and get donor cards made.
Ravindra Surve, director of the mandal, said, “This is a very important cause which we want to promote. The idea came to me when our former chief minister died of multi-organ failure. It made me realise the need to create awareness about this cause, just like eye donation and blood donation camps are promoted. I first registered with the ZTCC and later asked my fellow members to join in. Ten more members registered and we are expecting that we will have at least 100 willing donors by the end of the festival.”
Dr Jatin Kothari, Jt Secretary of ZTCC, said, “We were approached by the mandal for this social cause and we responded with enthusiasm as they are going to help us spread awareness. When we talk about transplantation, Lord Ganpati, who has the head of an elephant, is a divine example of natural transplantation. What better occasion than this to spread the social message?”
Another mandal in the city, Parshiwadi Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav mandal, is also highlighting the theme of organ donation this year. The mandal authorities are planning a unique multimedia show, in which an animated mouse will explain the importance of organ donation to the audience.
The secretary of the mandal, Pradeep Pande, said, “We are entering our 60th year and hence we thought of a new theme which had not been tried earlier. We spoke to many doctors and did our research because it was an awareness programme. We have received great support from them. We would be displaying a six-minute-long show on how important organ donation can be and how it can save many lives.”