Ganesh Visarjan 2019: Mumbaikars bid adieu to Khetwadicha Raja
Months on end are invested in preparation and anticipation of making this year's celebration grander and better in all aspects than the previous year
Devotees started preparing to welcome Lord Ganesha months before the festival. Pandals were set up, idols were made, keeping the intricate details in mind and the festival, which actually goes on for 10 days and ends in the blink of an eye.
Months on end are invested in preparation and anticipation of making this year’s celebration grander and better in all aspects than the previous and amidst all the chaos that ensues, the devotees somehow managed to achieve it. Devotees at Khetwadicharaja were present to seek the blessings of Lord Ganesha for one last time, yesterday as the 'karyakartas' were gearing up to take the Ganesha for immersion at Girgaon Chowpatty.
One of the devotees who couldn't stop staring at Ganesha with his hands folded said, "He comes every year, he goes every year but what remains behind are the memories. The quality time I get to spend with my family and him together is valuable." Another devotee who confessed that he is awake all night to take care of the idol said, "It's very difficult to say goodbye to him but the hope of seeing him again next year makes it a little easier to bid him a happy farewell."
The 'karyakartas' of the Mandal put all their sweat into organising the Mandal and ensuring that the devotees can worship Lord Ganesha. Many of them do not sleep for more than 2-3 hours during the ten days of the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. Pradeep, a 'karyakarta' at Khetwadichaganraj said, "This is the only time I get to spend with Lord Ganesha and hence I want to make full use of it. Moreover, Ganesha always looks at my well-being and health."
The owner of the Mandal, Suresh Mathur, said, "Lord Ganesha is always around us, protecting us. Lord Ganesha is always there within our hearts."
Khetwadicha Raja Mandal was established in the year 1959. It is currently one of the most-visited pandals in the city. It stands out for its theme and the Ganpati's height which is over 13.5 feet. This year, the idol of Ganesha has been designed and decorated in a look like that of Kangana Ranaut in 'Manikarnika'. The pandal has been designed to give a feel of 'Bajirao Mastani.'
Even in the midst of heavy rains, a sea of high spirited individuals thronged to the pandal to make it for the aarti. The colourful attire and the festive mood added to the celebration. The sound of the bells, 'nagadas', dhols and the melodious aartis, it takes you to another world.
As some people were busy performing the aarti, there was an artist who was drawing a sketch of Khetwadicha Ganraj. He took minute details into consideration, like the eyes and the trunk of Ganesha.
It's a fun fact that only Lalbaugcha Raja and Khetwadicha Raja have a patent on the Ganesha idol's face. Ranjeet Mathur, the owner of the pandal says, "The face of Khetwadicha Ganraj is absolutely different from the rest of the Ganpati idols. One will not find such eyes, ears and trunk in any other idol."
One ritual which is diligently followed at Khetwadicharaja is the Chhappan Bhog which literally means 56 types of food that are offered to God. The bhog consists of sweets in a variety of different flavours, namkeen samosas, chaat, kachori chocolates and a special cake.
Every dish is made with a lot of love and devotion by the devotees and the people who are attached to the Mandal. The cake was the star attraction of the feast, which had 'Ganraj' written in Hindi.
Ganesh Chaturthi 2019 is in its last day and as we bid a farewell to Ganesha until next year, lets have a look at everything that happened at Khetwadicharaja this year. Khetwadi has Ganpati idols in every lane but the one in the 12th lane happens to be the most popular.
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Ganesh Charurthi 2019: Visarjan highlights of Lalbaug Cha Raja