Vijayawada

Clay Ganesha idols the new rage

Households and pandal organisers make the switch towards an eco-friendly festival

A steady stream of buyers throngs a workshop at the remote Yendluru village near S.N. Padu, where a group of sculptors put finishing touches on rows of eco-friendly idols of Lord Ganesha ahead of Vinayaka Chavithi.

The idols, made using natural substances including sediment collected from the Ganga, and husk, hay and jute fibre, are made over four months by sculptors from West Bengal.

This is the fourth year in a row that Ms. Rachana Medikonda of Society for Awareness and Vision on Environment(SAVE) Foundation is running the workshop. "We are enthused by the positive response from environmentally-conscious people who have realised the idea behind using nature-friendly clay for making the idols. This practice has been followed by our ancestors down the ages," she says, adding that immersing these idols in water bodies is fully safe.

"We have received orders for 200 Ganesh idols this year," Ms. Rachana said.

"We will celebrate the festival in an eco-friendly manner by decorating the idol of the elephant-headed god with leaves as done by our forefathers. We will dissolve the idol on the apartment premises itself," said G. Subbaiah Sarma who bought a five-foot idol worth ₹5,000.

"We have been celebrating the festival in an eco-friendly manner for several years. This year will not be an exception," says Ranguthota Ganesh Pandal secretary K. Prasad, who has been arranging apples, cashew nuts, coconuts, and rice each year and distributing the same among devotees on the 11th day of the festival.

Drop in PoP idols

Chagollu in the district, which used to get good orders for PoP idols from devotees from Prakasam and Nellore districts, is reporting a 20% fall in orders this year in the wake of an increase in the cost of material including PoP and chemical paints, as well as increasing awareness among devotees.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 9:08:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Vijayawada/clay-idols-the-new-rage/article29309952.ece

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