See Pashupatinath temple in Ganesh Galli this year

Aug 21, 2012, 07:10 IST | Priyanka Dhomse

This year, the Lalbaug Sarvajanik Utsav Mandal has decided to recreate the famous shrine in Nepal to give devotees a truly spiritual experience

If you have always cherished the dream of visiting the famous Pashupatinath mandir in Nepal, you have a reason to smile this year — the shrine is being recreated at the famous Ganesh Galli Ganpati.

Padukas of the idol,Dinanath Velinge
Har har Mahadev: (Inset) Padukas of the idol; The Ganpati idol this year is being sculpted by Vijay Khatu, and will be a tribute to famous sculptor Dinanath Velinge. Pics/Dutta Kumbhar

With Ganpati festival round the corner, the famous Lalbaug Sarvajanik Utsav Mandal, popularly known as Ganesh Galli, has already started recreating the holy Hindu spot.

In the past, the mandal has successfully recreated various holy pilgrimage spots situated all around India. Pashupatinath mandir is a shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva, and is regarded as one of the most holy sites for Hindus, situated in Kathmandu on the bank of the River Baghmati.

The temple dates back to 400 AD. “Our main aim behind recreating Pashupatinath mandir in Mumbai is because there are many Hindus who wish to visit the holy site in Nepal but don’t get a chance to do so. So we thought that we should come up with the concept of Pashupatinath mandir so that people feel that they have actually visited the mandir in Nepal,” said Sanjay Sawant, vice-president of the Ganesh Galli Mandal.

This year, the idol at the Ganesh Galli mandal will be similar to the one that was installed in 1989, a creation of the well-known sculptor Dinanath Velinge, who first started sculpting massive Ganesh idols.

The same idol will be remade by Velinge’s apprentice and now famous sculptor Vijay Khatu. The contract for designing the replica of Pashupatinath Temple has been given to Biharilal Giri, owner of Maharaja Arts. Giri started work two months away from the festival and around 40-50 artisans are now working round the clock to turn the vision into a reality.

The organisers of the mandal are known for various charitable activities like blood donation. “It is a very proud moment for me, as I am going to make the same idol which was made by my guru Dinanath Vilenge in 1989 at Ganesh Galli and I am very thankful to the mandal for giving me this chance,” said Khatu. 

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