With Ganesh Chaturthi starting from today, it’s time to celebrate the traditions. Sagarika tells CS, “I love Lord Ganesha. He looks so benevolent in any form. I love the fact that he’s often modelled in different forms like a writer, tabla player or musician.” We catch her for a chat as she checks the idols at Om Morya Chitra Mandir, Parel:
Who: Sagarika Ghatge
What: On her favourite Lord Ganesha
Where: At a pandal in Parel
Pic/ Sunil Tiwari
Promotional Feature/Editor: Janhavi Samant
Deva oh deva
Being a Maharashtrian, Lord Ganesha is the favourite deity of my home. We don’t keep an idol in our Mumbai home but there’s a big family puja at our ancestral home in Kolhapur. My mother is a firm believer of Lord Ganesha, and so am I. There have been periods in my life when I felt down and out. And whenever I have prayed to him, he has found out a way for me.
I have a huge sweet tooth. I really crave modaks, specially the fried ones. As a kid, I used to wait patiently for the time when the aarti would get over and I would get a modak to eat. My favourite is the traditional one made of rice flour and coconut filling. I also enjoyed modaks from different homes as each tasted different.
The aarti is another aspect of the festival that really attracts me. Every year, I go to the homes of my close friends and family friends to attend aarti. I think being part of an aarti is a blessing as it’s so uplifting. Sukhkarta Dukhharta is the one I love.
Last year, I visited the idol at Lalbaug. The enormity of the festivities was really mesmerising. I really consider myself lucky that I got to see the idol with comparative ease. I also visit the Andhericharaja Pandal as it’s the closest to my house. If I get an opportunity, I would like to see Pune’s famous Dagduseth Ganpati.
My favourite memory of Ganpati celebrations is one of the Visarjan. When I was a six-year-old kid, my maid and the boy who used to look after me used to carry me on their shoulders and show me the Ganpati processions. The singing, dancing, rains and the crowd — the atmosphere was magical.