Ganesh Nimajjan so dull this year
Ganesh Nimajjan this year, was quite dull in comparison to what it usually is in Hyderabad. All the roads used to be packed with rallies of Ganesh Nimajjan one behind the other. Scared of getting struck for hours in the busy Begumpet road, which is among the significant ones for Nimajjan, I even did not go to office this year, deciding to work from home. But little did I know this year that it would be so much easier that the roads were deserted even compared to traffic at 4 am (sometimes when I go out cycling at that time) of regular days!
And the power houses have transferred the electricity from residential colonies to the to-be busy rally roads, leaving residents in dark and the to-be busy roads actually go empty!
Since there was no need for competing with any, the few Nimajjan rallies that existed also, took their sweet time even to get onto the road. Or worse, get onto the road and then decide to pull off the road so they get to stay on the road for longer time!
There is no decrease in festive spirit for those participating though. People are rejoicing, and dancing. Loud music. An added attraction this year though is there were at least couple of groups singing songs, both south and north Indian. Many onlookers stopped and enjoyed them for quite some time.
And as always there were vendors selling items for the kids and kids-like elders. It did not matter for commerce whether the vendors were local or had come from Rajasthan just as they would sell Chinese products at traffic junctions. That brings up a question to me how come China does not make Ganesh Idols and sell them for peanuts. Quality may not matter as long as they appear good (and Godly), and can last for 11 days before the Nimajjan is done. Last year for I watched a video showing Chinese performing Ganesh pooja very traditionally, in China!
While the saffron clad danced and sang and celebrated, the spirited Muslims sometimes drove Ganesh chariot (aka truck)!
Government made excellent arrangements. They claim that because of their planning and traffic regulations, around 58,000 Ganesh idols’ immersion took place at Tank Bund with least inconvenience to regular traffic and also completing the whole nimajjan in record time. Even the mighty Khairatabad Ganesh nimajjan was completed by afternoon it seems. I am not sure about that since this year the focus on Ganesh celebrations seemed on lower key so far as I noticed (the Telangana festivals took its place). But yes, from traffic regulations to directions to friendly police to free drinking water, there were excellent arrangements from Government of Telangana this year. Hats off! But we also have citizens who throw the drinking water as fountains into the air 😦
And there were way too many organizations who provided free food to the visitors as charity. It’s a pity though on one hand we have people queuing up for food, but on the other hand large chunks of food is wasted and spread over the path. When do Indian citizens become more responsible?
I found few visitors thronging to the far and few cranes to have a glimpse of large idols being immersed in the Hussain Sagar. As against more than half a dozen cranes that I normally see on this road, this time I got to see only one (may be there is one more at the other end of the tank bund).
One other difference this year was a substantial increase in number of mini Ganesh idols. When I saw one few years back, it was a major attraction. Not any more!
Completing an eight kilometer plus walk for the Ganesh Nimajjan shoot (despite just recovering from a throat infection) and satisfying my health and artistic needs, I returned home by midnight, happy! Jai! Ganesh!