On Friday, the Mumbai Police issued an order stating that citizens should not take photographs of idols floating or half-submerged after the immersion of the idols during the immersion days
On Friday, the Mumbai Police issued an order stating that citizens should not take photographs of floating or half-submerged idols after the immersion days during the 10-day Ganeshotsav festival. The preventive order also stated that citizens shall not publish or circulate such photos.
The 10-day Ganeshotsav festival will begin on September 19 and conclude on September 28 this year. The Ganpati and Gaur idols will be immersed by the devotees on September 20th, 21st, 23rd, 25th, 28th.
Some of the half dissolved/idols drift ashore during high tide or float in the lake water after the immersion day. "People take photographs of such idols lying ashore or being taken by Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) workers for reimmersion and publish/circulate such photographs which may likely outrage religious feelings may result into disturbance of public peace and tranquility," the order stated.
"Immediate measures are necessary to prohibit taking, publishing, and circulating such photographs after immersion," the order further stated.
According to the preventive order, clicking such photos is prohibited under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 (Act No. Il of 1973).
In the order, Vishal Thakur, Dy. Commissioner of Police (Operations), stated, "No person shall take photographs of idols floating or half-submerged after the immersion and shall not publish the same or circulate it. This order shall remain effective throughout Brihanmumbai from September 20 to September 29, 2023. Any violation of this order is punishable us 188 IPC. I further direct that this order shall be published and promulgated in Brihanmumbai by affixing copies thereof in conspicuous public places, by advertising the same in local newspapers, and by proclaiming the same through loudspeakers in Brihanmumbai."
Meanwhile, in a significant move aimed at providing relief to the Ganesh mandals across Maharashtra, the state govt has decided that the mandals will now only need to obtain permission once every five years, an official statement stated.