Siddipet: What started as a small effort towards reducing pollution levels during Ganesh Chaturthi is fast gaining momentum in Siddipet Assembly constituency, and may well end up as a State-wide movement. The people leading the movement are villagers, who have a lesson or two for the urbanites on how to check pollution through their gesture that also has spirit of unity as a byproduct.
Following former Minister T Harish Rao’s call to avoid multiple installation of Ganesh idols in every village, the Mitapally gram panchayat recently passed a resolution stating that only one Ganesh idol would be installed in the villages instead of the average 10 every year. Realising the potential pollution threat that plaster of Paris and the toxic colour that are used in the making of the idols, the villagers are firm on having just one idol at the village centre this year.
Four other villages — Kodandaraopally, Rampur, Machapur, Bandacherlapally — have now followed suit resolving to set up only one Ganesh idol this year through resolutions passed in their respective gram panchayats.
Idea worth emulating
Environmentalists believe that the idea is worthy of emulation across Telangana State since it is the only way one can restrict pollution caused by these idols. Since at least five to ten Ganesh idols are installed in every village, Harish Rao called upon the people of his constituency to install only one idol in every village. He also suggested that they install small, clay idols of Ganesh in their homes to offer prayers during the Navarathri festivities.
Harish’s appeal and the subsequent decision by five villages has now sparked a debate in the remaining 80 villages in Siddipet Assembly constituency. They are conducting meetings in their respective villages to pass resolutions to have only one Ganesh idol, and this could have a cascading effect across the State to check pollution substantially. More and more villages are expected to join these five villages in the next couple of days. Since these villages are constituting Ganesh Utsava Committees with women and youth as members, the decision to install only one Ganesh idol is also expected to bring in a sense of unity among the villagers. This in turn is will play a crucial role in the development of the villages. These committees will also encourage installation of only clay idols in individual houses during the festival.
Harish Rao said the villages will witness all-round development if they continue to carry out various development works with the same spirit.