A pandal that keeps up with the times

The Thanawalas have been setting up pandals every year to spread awareness of current affairs

A south Mumbai family, which has been showcasing theme-based Ganeshotsav pandals, will have the city’s transport infrastructure as its theme this year. The Thanawalas, a Gujarati family from Girgaum, have been celebrating Ganeshostav with an aim to spread awareness of current affairs.

Umesh Thanawala, the current organiser of the pandals, said, “We started theme-based pandals in 1987, and the first pandal was based on that year’s Cricket World Cup. Since then, we have tried to create awareness of current affairs through these pandals.”

The theme chosen this year is ‘Mumbai Is Upgrading’ and the aim is to spread awareness of the development of public infrastructure in the city. The pandal will be showcased at Thanawala building on September 2 and 3, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Mr. Thanawala said, “Mumbai never sleeps. It overcomes the greatest disasters and is back to work the next day. Mumbaikars lead a fast-paced life and spend a lot of time commuting. With the ever-increasing population, which has led to space crunch and increased traffic woes, the commute time has taken a toll on Mumbaikars. Mumbai requires great public infrastructure to help residents reduce their commute time. With all the development projects undertaken by the MMRDA, the Mumbai Metro, the Mumbai Traffic Police, the Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation, the BMC and the State government, we will face inconvenience, but we must be patient and thankful for these projects.”

3D map of city

The Ganapati pandal will include a 3D map of Mumbai, which has been created by the youngest generation of the Thanawala family. The map will show how the city will look when all the projects such as Metro 3, coastal road, bullet train and hyperloop are completed.

The decoration will include aarti plates, which list out initiatives the citizens can take at an individual level to help make the city a better place. It will also include news articles and information to make devotees aware of various upcoming and proposed projects. The house will be decorated in green and blue in keeping with the colour scheme of the Metro 3 barricades.

Mr. Thanawala said, “We work in the printing industry and have in-house facilities to design pandals. It can take us anywhere between a day to more than a month to work on these themes.”

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 3:18:14 PM |

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