The mantra for this Ganesh Chaturthi
Pedestrians are going to be squeezed out of the small space they have on the pavements, as many are going to sprout small stalls selling everything from foodstuff to trinkets and toys to sell to worshippers
With one day to go for Lord Ganesh to enthrone himself in mandals across Mumbai, we know that the city will see challenging times ahead. The festive season is upon us, which means more crowds, traffic-snarls on our roads and crowded public transport. Discipline will help Mumbai ease challenges and help lawmakers in their tough, unenviable task. Pedestrians are going to be squeezed out of the small space they have on the pavements, as many are going to sprout small stalls selling everything from foodstuff to trinkets and toys to sell to worshippers.
We want big mandals to step up to the plate this season. It will be admirable if mandals spout messages — from communal harmony to organ donation and pledging to keep the city clean. While these may sound trite and temporary, they do have a subtle effect on the thousands that visit to pay respects to Lord Ganesh.
Let us hope Mumbai mandals use their space as creatively as possible to get these social service messages across. Professional communicators will tell us that they have an enviable platform and a ready, captive audience of hundreds if not thousands. Use the physical space, the mandal and the sentiment to drive home a point, which can be good for the community and overall, the city.
Mandal organisers need to ensure that discipline is paramount when it comes to worshippers. In the past, we have had mandal staffers and the cops get into skirmishes and power tussles. This is about being on the same page and ensuring a safe festival for all. Staffers and organisers must adhere to police rules and, in fact, work in tandem with the cops. Cleaning up every day, basic safety measures for bigger mandals including some first aid and fire safety is imperative. Here is wishing all a very happy Ganesh Chaturthi.
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