Festive mood has set in Hyderabad with the start of Ganesh Chaturthi and installation of thousands of colourful idols of Ganesh in different styles all over the city.
Huge decorated and illuminated pandals have come up on almost every street and colonies as people made a beeline for offering prayers. Though, many giant idols made up of Plaster of Paris have been installed, the biggest of them was a 60-feet-tall Ganesh at Khairatabad in the heart of the city. Though every year this pandal has been enjoying the status of being the tallest, the organisers decided to increase its height to 60 feet as this was the 60th year of the pandal.
Yet another unique feature of the idol was the 5 ton specially prepared laddu in the hands of the idol. Interestingly, this laddu was prepared at Tapeshwaram in East Godavari district with special ingredients and preservatives to ensure that it is not spoiled over the next ten days. The laddu was brought from almost 500 km away and put up in the left hand of the idol using a crane.
For the last four years the laddu was being prepared by the Suruchi Foods company team led by Malli Babu. Special care was taken this time as last year the laddu was spoiled and could not be distributed among the worshippers and had to be dumped in Hussain Sagar lake along with the idol on the immersion day. This year the idol has been designed in the form of ‘Sri Kailasha Ganapaty’ with Ganesh, Shiva and Parvati’s faces on the three sides.
State Governor ESL Narasimhan and his wife were the first to offer prayers at the Khairatabad pandal followed by Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao who visited the pandal in the evening. His Andhra Pradesh counterpart N Chandrababu Naidu offered prayers at Ganesh pandal in his Telugu Desam Party office in Hyderabad. “I prayed for peace and prosperity in both the States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh,” he said.
Though immersion of the idols will start after a week, the main procession will be on September 8 when most of the idols will be immersed in Hussain Sagar lake, notwithstanding the objection and opposition of the environmental conservationists.