Metro cuts down height of devotion

With MMRDA banning vehicles higher than 4.5 metre from passing under the bridge on JP Road, Andheri, Ganpati mandals fume over finding alternate routes

THE Metro construction work has dampened the spirits of Ganesh devotees.

Mandals, who opt to immerse their deities at Seven Bungalows beach, near Versova village, will have to find an alternate route to JP Road, as construction of Metro stations for the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar (VAG) metro is still in progress.

Owing to the ongoing Metro work, officials have imposed a
height restriction of 4.5 m, which means that idols above
8 ft won't be able to travel on JP road in Andheri (West)

For mandal organisers this comes as bad news, as JP Road was the one route used by most to immerse the deities at Versova beach.

However, owing to the ongoing work, officials have imposed a height restriction of 4.5 metre, which means that most idols won't be able to travel on the road.

Speaking to MiD DAY, Sudhakar Ahire, member of SVP Nagar Sarvajanik Utsav Samiti, said, "As the construction of the metro stations is in progress near the Seven Bungalows junction, it will be difficult to take our idols for immersion via JP road owing to the height restriction."

Commenting on the difficulties for mandals, Sujit Sonkar, a member of another mandal, added, "This is not the first time that we have been inconvenienced owing to the Metro. Last year too, we had to choose an alternative route, which was a big problem for us."

Last year too, Ganesh mandal organisers from Jogeshwari and other suburbs were asked to use a diversion owing to the Metro construction.

Dilip Kawatkar, Joint Project Director, MMRDA, said, "The entire project has been planned in such a way that once the construction work is complete, there will be no hindrances for processions.

The clearance under the rail bridge is currently 4.5 metre. At present, it may cause inconvenience to some of the mandals, but we will try and complete the work as soon as possible."

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