‘Gauri Habba’ (today, Tuesday 30 August) & ‘Ganesh Chaturthi’ (Tomorrow Wednesday 31 August) Kudla Hindus Gearing Up for the Big Feasts
Mangaluru: It’s ‘Gauri Habba’ today ‘Ganesh Chaturthi tomorrow’, and the City is gearing up with excitement, with devotees thronged at shops and markets buying Lord Ganesh idols, flowers, vegetables and whatnot, that are required to celebrate the great feast. Ganesh Chaturthi festival in Karnataka is different from other regions as the festival is preceded by the Swarna Gouri Vratam or Gouri Habba, therefore the Chaturthi festival is also known as Ganesh Gouri Festival.
Yes, Ganesh Chaturthi is back, and with it the most lovable deity of contemporary Hinduism, larger and more beautiful year after year. The city will celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi in a grand manner this year unlike last year held in a sombre manner. The festival, celebrated with much fervour and joy here, usually witnesses large processions and crowds. Last year the state government restricted the festival just to rituals, but this year the celebrations will be full-fledged, but under regulations as announced by Deputy Commissioner Dr KV Rajendra. Shops ( some makeshift shops, just for the occasion) are flooded with colourful Ganesh idols in different sizes and lots and lots of colourful glittering decorative items, tempting the devotees to buy them. Flower vendors have set up their business on the footpaths and at busy junctions.
Kudla is wearing a festive look with devotees flocking in from different parts of the Coastal City to pick up their favourite Ganesha idol. Prices on most idols have gone up due to the rise in the cost of clay, and also that clay is not easily available. Inflation has not dimmed the locals – People never care about the price, since they have to celebrate their favourite feast, no matter what the circumstances are. Many idol makers have stayed away from making Ganesha idols out of plaster of paris. The Pollution Board Officials are keeping an eye on you- and will seize POP Ganesha’s?
The main street during the time of “Ganesh Chaturthi’ – The Car street is buzzing with excitement and activities. Street vendors were busy making a few bucks here and there, either selling idols, flowers, moode leaves, sugar cane, vegetables etc; etc; Both the street vendors and shop owners are glad the demand has been good so far. Car Street flower market was booming with business, so also the vendors on the streets and by-lanes. Women and men near car street temple were seen making Moode and Kottige leaves molds. A 12-piece bundle of full-length sugarcane is costing around Rs 375-Rs 400. An early morning rush was seen near Clock Tower, where street vendors from Bagalkot, Hassan, and other North Karnataka were making brisk sales on flowers.
In Dakshina Kannada, Ganeshotsava is celebrated with pomp and grandeur. Sanghaniketan, which has been conducting the event for over 75 years, is in full swing for the festival celebrations. Apart from it, a few bhajan mandals and others have planned for public Ganeshotsava celebrations. Meanwhile, markets are flooded with vegetables and flowers which are a must during Ganesh Chaturthi.
All obstacles, whatever they may be, are rooted out by worshipping Ganesha, and it is the blessing necessary to any society. Ganesha derives all his qualities from the elephant. The elephant is huge and strong yet gentle, qualities of Ganesha. The elephant is known to be wise: Ganesha symbolizes wisdom and knowledge- and that’s exactly what this Feast stands for.
So, although there is a surge in prices of Lord idols, flowers, and vegetables, the celebration mood is still buried deep in the heart of the devotees, who are all excited to celebrate the big feast. The weather has been perfect for all the shopping spree, but in the next few days, heavy rains are expected.
So while Hindus are getting ready to chant,” Ganapathi Bappa Morya”, Team Mangalorean would like to wish our beloved Hindu readers a Happy and Fun-Filled “Ganesh Chaturthi.”