Ganesh festival is one among the common festival celebrated blissfully and joyfully across India. Lord Ganesha is believed to be the God of wisdom and power. In India, people worship Lord Ganesh before starting any new work. The festival marks the birthday of Lord Ganesha and on this day the idols of Ganpati are decorated by the skilled artisans. The festival starts with an installation of temporary structures in every locality.
The festival is the time for cultural activities like singing and theatre performances, orchestra and other community activities. On the final day of celebration, the idol of Ganesh is taken through the streets in a procession, which is accompanied by dancing, singing and fanfare and then immersed into river. This ritual is known as Ganesh Visarjan. People from all across join this procession shouting Ganpati Bappa Morya.
Though Ganpati festival is the most popular festival celebrated in India, but however we forget small things about the celebration. Thinking about what we are talking about? Well, here we are not talking about music, lights, or mouth watering delicacies; rather here we are talking about environment. Yes, in this article we provide you tips on how to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi in an eco-friendly way.
No doubt, everybody loves to adorn Ganpati idols and celebrate it with great enthusiasm and passion. But the most serious impact this festival has on environment due to immersion of idols. The immersion of idols made from the chemical materials causes water pollution. The use of thermocol and plastic materials as well garlands increases bio- degradable waste. So, the toxic waste from the materials kills plant and animal life. Celebrating Ganesh festival in an eco-friendly way is important for other living beings too. Following are some tips on how to celebrate Ganesh festival in an Eco-friendly way.
Here are some ways on celebrate it in a different, yet passionate way:
Use an Eco-friendly Ganesh idol– Going green has become a new way to live life, so this season say no to idols made from chemical. The chemicals like plaster of paris, clay, thermocol pollute the environment, so it is better to select natural, bio-degradable material, so that even after its immersion it doesn’t great a large impact on the environment, water and surroundings. The idols should be made from natural materials like unbaked clay, coconut, paint or with natural colours.
Restrict the size and number of Ganesh idols in your society– It is an acknowledged fact that the bigger size of idols occupies more space. The height of Ganpati idol should be restricted to 5 feet or to 1.5 meters. Rather than keeping the idol for exhibhition, the rituals of the festival should be performed in an ardent way. Huge idols of Ganesha also consume more clay or plaster of paris, thus adding more biodegradable waste to the environment. Moreover, it is difficult to immerse because it consumes lot of time in dissolving in water and sometimes it may not be possible to immerse the same in the water. It may lead to disappointment among people and also leads to traffic congestion and difficulty in transportation.
Save Energy– It is important to save energy in the present times because ultimately it would have a great impact on the environment where we are living. So, it is better to switch on decorative lights during the special occasion like you can replace artificial lightning arrangements or traditional bulbs like incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lights. These lights are energy efficient and help in saving electricity bills. The coloured papers can also be wrapped around the bulbs to add light to the home rather than buying expensive light bulbs for Ganpati decoration.
Use natural colours for decorating Ganpati pandal– It is important that before decorating Ganpati, to take into consideration all the eco-friendly way. Like, if you want to decorate Ganpati pandal, forget about the colours that are harmful to the nature; rather go for bio-degradable colours for making Rangoli. Now, are you thing what are natural bio-degradable colours? Well, don’t get confused here we are talking about turmeric, mehendi,rice, heena, powder, and gulal. Such colours don’t pose a great damage to the environment. So, go green is a new mantra.
Eco Friendly Ganpati Decoration– Gone are the days, when people used to follow traditional methods of Ganpati home decorations, now its time to do something unique and something that is called as eco-friendly. In festivals, people usually use plastic and non-biodegradable material for decoration like thermocol and plaster of paris. These materials cause more damage to the environment when dumped in the garbage later. Natural materials like cloth, paper and wood can be used to decorate Ganpati. Bells can be made from cloth to decorate the idol of Ganpati. So, this Ganpati festival forget about thermocol and other non-degradable materials, go for eco-friendly Ganpati home decoration ideas.
Say no to Plastic- From the very beginning, we all know plastic causes a great harm to nature, hence at various places plastic is a banned material. So, this Ganpati decoration say no to plastic and use materials that is of significant value. These plastic materials are ban on nature and can cause respiratory disorders too. So, if you are planning to make plastic bags for parsads or other offerings, then wait a minute and think about it.
The offerings or Prasad or fruits which are sent to Ganpati pandals are eaten and plastic is thrown here and there as garbage. Noone takes care about it and most of us don’t know that it has a great impact on creating polluted environment. So, this Ganpati season, say yes to biodegradable materials and no to plastic! Thinking what are bio-degradable materials are? Well, these are those materials which can be used later. Instead of opting for plastic bags for disposal for offerings, use paper bags. Even you can natural plates like banana leaves; instead of plastic plates for distribute offerings or parsad. Disposable, non-biodegradable products including plastic sheets have a negative effect on the environment. So, this Ganpati season refrain from using plastic bags, use some better alternative.
Avoid Noise Pollution- We all know today the greatest danger that our environment is facing is that of noise pollution. Noise pollution can create a dangerous effect on environment thus leading to several disorder among human being. It will not only destroy the delicate balance of nature, but will also have a dramatic affect on the nature. So, if you want to celebrate Ganpati in a unique way and also has a passion or a zeal to save nature, then the small tip is to avoid noise pollution and go for something that doesn’t create disturbance for others.
The mantra is to avoid playing loud music and DJ that might disturb the people around you or around your locality. Instead go for some less sound or low instruments that don’t create drastic pressure on the ears. Loudspeakers can create a big problem to hospitals, old age homes and to educational institutions. The speakers and microphones should be played within a restricted time like from 6 a.m to 10 p.m, so that no one gets affected. Everyone should abide by the rules and regulation. Another way to prevent loud noise is to avoid bursting firecrackers. The firecrackers will also have an effect on the hearing power of small children as well as aged people of the locality. There is no rule to enjoy the festival with firecrackers. Moreover, these crackers emit fumes that pose health threat to the patients and to general public health.
Restrict the number of pandals– It is not necessary that every locality should keep idol of Ganpati. Its like two localities can share the expenses and keep a single Ganpati idol in order to save money and to create less impact on environment. How you can restrict the number of Ganpati pandals? Well, its easy. As we know more Ganpati pandals means more noise pollution, dumped garbage and more wastage, so instead of celebrating the same festival in different pandal, make an arrangement and celebrate it in the same pandal. Create a huge pandal, decorate it with biodegradable materials and ask people from different community to join you in this celebration. This will also reduce the number of immersions at the large stage. So, in order to celebrate Ganpati in an eco-friendly, restrict the number of pandals and enjoy the festival with passion.
Artificial Tanks– Well, there are several ways to celebrate Ganpati in an eco-friendly way, but the next idea is truly different and one-of-a-kind. Well thinking about what are we talking? Well, gasp your breath, here we are referring to artificial immersion tank. The same water body that is used for immersion or visarjan can be used for the purpose of irrigation, which might pose health hazard to the people. So, it is important to immerse it in a way that doesn’t harms anyone in the nature. Like for the purpose of immersion, you can use artificial tank instead of natural water source like pond or river or lake. It will save nature as well as human.
Generate awareness about eco-friendly Ganpati– now, that you know a lot about Ganpati eco-friendly decorations, now its time to spread the awareness about this campaign. Tell them from the basics. What is eco-friendliness and the benefit that it will offer to us and Mother Nature? Then start with Ganpati decorations and the way we can change it to an eco-friendly way. In this way, start a new campaign around your locality. It will definitely bring a change. Understand the concept behind celebrating this festival in its true and after effects that it leaves on us and on Mother nature. There are innumerable ways on how to spread the awareness about the concept. More and more eco-friendly ways should be developed and communicated on how to celebrate the occasions in an eco-friendly way and how to motivate others. Posters and videos can be distributed to share knowledge about eco-friendly ways. Awareness drives in form of campaigns should be created.
Even in schools a new campaign can be started on how to celebrate festival with fervor without disturbing the harmony of nature. The teachers can ask children to prepare charts, write small paragraphs and research on how to go green or how to celebrate Ganesh festival in an eco-friendly way. It will definitely bring a revolution.
Create a Compost Pit for the Organic Material– After the procession is done, decoration is over, it is important to collect the materials separately, including the offerings, garlands also known as Nirmalaya and flowers and other materials and put all these materials into a community built compost pit. This pit can serve as a fertilizer for your garden. If you immerse all these materials in such way, wrap them in the newspapers instead of polythene bags as paper is not bio-degradable. Dried flowers can further be used to make natural colors or decorative paper gifts.
Last but not the least; instead of immersing Ganesh idols in a water body; they can be immersed spiritually in your home too. Some people use metal idol or a stone idol, which can be immersed in bucketful of water or even be carried out in a procession to the sea, hold it under the water for some time and then bring back idol in your home for the next year celebration. A betel nut in place of idol can be immersed in a bucket of water. Another way of immersion is to sprinkle a few drops of water on the idol and then wipe it off and thus keeping it for the next year usage.