Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in an elaborate manner in the states of Maharashtra, Goa Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The non-resident Indians of United States, Mauritius, China Nepal, etc., celebrate this festival with same passion and energy. Lord Ganesh, the elephant headed God, is regarded as the deity of supreme spiritual wisdom and the demolisher of obstacles. Ganesh Chaturthi is a ten day festival to celebrate the birth of Lord Ganesh, which falls in the Bhadrapada month (August-September) as per the Hindu calendar.
Preparation of this expensive festival begins everywhere, particularly in Mumbai, few months before the celebration. During this ten-day festival period, each and every corner of Mumbai city vibrates with the sound of devotional songs, mantras, slokas, drumbeats and the chanting of “Ganapati Bappa Morya” . Theatrical performances, dances, fascinating pandals with amazing illuminations, and delicious delicacies like modak enhance the enthusiasm of the festivity. The city of Mumbai displays some of the magnificent puja pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi.
Some Iconic Puja Pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi in Mumbai:
1) GSB Seva Mandal Ganpati, King Circle: This is definitely the costliest Ganapati pandal in the world. Here the Ganesh idol is adorned with 60 kg of gold and 175 kg of silver.
2) Lalbaugcha Raja: It is the second most popular pandal of Mumbai which exhibits wonderful workmanship and talent.
3) Khetwadi Lane 11 Ganpati: This pandal is famous for the astonishing display of skill of the artisans. In this pandal, the idols display outstanding creativity. In the pandal exhibited in 2014, the idol was prepared with one half of Lord Ganesh and the other half Lord Shiva thus providing an amazing feast to the eyes.
4) “Mumbaicha Raja” Lalbaug Ganesh Galli: This pandal is renowned for its remarkable display of outstanding themes. In 2014, this pandal exhibited the famous Jejuri temple of Pune.
5) Andhericha Raja: This is another pandal, famous for its outstanding display of amazing themes. It is established in the year 1966, and is very popular for fulfilling wishes and hence it is visited by millions of devotees during the festival time.
6) Chinchpokli Cha Chintamani Ganpati: This is among the oldest pandals in Mumbai, established in 1920 and is renowned for display of one of the remarkable Ganapathy idols in Mumbai.
7) Kamatipuracha Chintamani Ganesh: This pandal is famous for its brilliantly displayed idols depicting unique themes making it among the most famous puja pandals in Mumbai.
8) Tulsiwadi Cha Maharaja (Tardeo) Ganesh: Established in the year 1939 this is one of the oldest pandals in Mumbai. The craftsmanship of this pandal is very famous which displays unique and extraordinary themes like the Lord astraddle on five horses.
9) Dongri Cha Raja: This pandal set up in the year 1999 is regarded as one of the famous puja pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Mumbai.
10) Chandanwadi (Chira Bazaar) Ganpati: This mandap is also famous for its exclusive idols. Because of the skill of the artisans this was declared the best in the year 2014.
Some Outstanding Puja Pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi in Hyderabad:
Similar to Mumbai, the city of Hyderabad is also renowned for some famous puja pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi. Some of the remarkable pandals of Hyderabad are:
Khiratabad Ganesh Utsav Samiti: This is one of the famous Ganapati mandaps in Hyderabad, which, in 2015, celebrated 61 years of Ganesh Chaturthi when it displayed a 59 feet tall idol of “Trishaktimaya Moksha Ganapati.”
Balapur Ganesh Utsava Samiti: It is popularly known as Aadi Ganapati meaning “the leading Ganapati”, and is significant for the immersion ceremony in Hyderabad.
Even though in India Ganesh Chaturhi is regarded as a nationwide celebration, Maharashtra celebrates this festival with the greatest energy and enthusiasm. Hence it presents some of the most remarkable mandaps of Ganesh Chaturthi festival in India. Following Mumbai, the city of Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh also displays some famous puja pandals of Ganesh Chaturthi.