Mumbai: Every devotee in GSB pandal will be insured for Rs 10 lakh

Sep 11, 2015, 06:51 IST | Varun Singh

All of the 1,989 devotees that can fit into the pandal of the city’s richest Ganpati mandal at any given time will be insured for a sum of up to Rs 10 lakh against accidents like stampede, fire

If you happen to be one of the 1,989 people that can fit inside the pandal of the Goud Saraswat Brahmin (GSB) Mandal Ganpati at King’s Circle, the richest Ganpati mandal in the city will have you covered for a sum of up to Rs 10 lakh in case of any accident.

Also Read: Mumbai's richest Ganpati insured for over Rs 50 crore a day

Devotees at the pandal of the GSB Mandal last year. The amount of gold on the idol itself is valued at above Rs 20 crore
Devotees at the pandal of the GSB Mandal last year. The amount of gold on the idol itself is valued at above Rs 20 crore

Should the accident take place outside the pandal — even just outside it — however, you should hope that Lord Ganpati is watching over you.

Taking no chances
The GSB Mandal, which has got itself insured for Rs 237 crore this year, has also ensured that the 1,989 devotees and mandal officers that can fit inside the pandal at any given time also have a personal accident cover of Rs 10 lakh each.

This will cover things like stampede, fire, the structure of the pandal collapsing, etc and will be valid till they are in the pandal. The Lalbaugcha Raja Ganpati, which has an insurance of Rs 51 crore, has also taken insurance for a new kind of threat — poison in the Prasad.

While the GSB Mandal has its Ganpati for five days, Lalbaugcha Raja has it for 10 days, making their per-day insurance cover work out to Rs 47.4 crore and Rs 5.1 crore respectively.

Keeping it simple
While the amounts seem high, the GSB’s total figure of Rs 237 crore is actually Rs 21 crore less than what it had been insured for last year.

The dip in gold prices — because of which the gold jewellery on the idol is valued at less and, thus, commands a lower premium — is one of the reasons, but another major reason, according to mandal officials, is that they are keeping things simple compared to previous years, given the drought in the state.

Lalbaugcha Raja’s figure has also seen no hike this year because they, too, are ensuring that nothing extravagant is done because of the drought. The figure — Rs 51 crore — is exactly the same as last year. The insurance for both mandals is done by nationalised insurance companies and the amount for the GSB Mandal is the highest in the city.

Read Story: King Circle's GSB Ganpati insured for Rs 223 crore

It covers the idol, gold, mandap and insures devotees against, fire, terrorist attacks and even riots. For Lalbaugcha Raja, the insurance covers the idol, gold, devotees — including devotees participating on the immersion day. The insurance starts from the first day of the festival and is valid till the moment the mandal trustees bring back and deposit the gold in the bank lockers.

Number crunching
“A tender was floated by the mandal which was opened earlier this week. The insurance of the mandal is to the tune of R237 crore,” said senior trustee Satish Nayak of the GSB mandal. Lalbaugcha Raja has paid a premium of Rs 13 lakh to the insurance company.

The president of the mandal, Ashok Pawar, said, “The insurance is for all of Mumbai, with people pouring in on the visarjan day too. We have even added the extra precaution against poison in the Prasad. Everything, till the time the idol is immersed, is insured.”

Going by the Rs 13 lakh premium that Lalbaugcha Raja paid for an insurance of Rs 51 crore, the GSB mandal must have paid a premium of over Rs 50 lakh for its insurance.

Rs 13 lakh
The amount paid as premium by Lalbaugcha Raja for an insurance of Rs 51 crore

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