Nashik, Sep 2 : The 10-day-long festival of Ganesh Utsav began with traditional fervour and gaiety, amid chants of 'Ganpati Bappa Morya' in Nashik and other parts of Maharashtra on Monday.
Many devotees brought their favourite God to their homes, amid beats of drums in the morning hours for the Bhadrapad Shuddh Chaturthi, also known as Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. People decorated the idols with flowers and garlands and prayed in the morning, while offering modaks and laddoos, considered as Lord Ganesh's favourite sweets, to their idol, who is always worshipped before beginning any new work.
This year, environmentally-aware citizens of Nashik preferred Ganapati idols made out of Shadu clay over those made out plaster-of-paris and hence, the number of eco-friendly clay idols doubled, in comparison to the previous year. In morning, heavy rush was seen at all stalls at Golf Club ground, Nasardi Bridge, Gangapur Road, Indira Nagar and other various places in the city and district, including Malegaon, with people making a beeline to bring home, their beloved God.
In Nashik city, there are total 695 Ganesh mandals, including 158 big Sarvajanik mandals, which celebrate the Ganesh festival. Police department and the civic body had made tight security arrangements, to ensure that the festival was held smoothly. Police also started armed flag march in the city from Sunday. (UNI)