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Sonia Phalnikar | Ideas

Green Ganeshas

Photo: cc/elycefeliz

Ganesha Chaturthi is a major Hindu festival in India. The highlight is the immersion of thousands of idols of the elephant-headed god Ganesha in lakes and rivers. Environmentalists however say the brightly-colored statues contain toxic chemicals which cause serious pollution to water bodies. 

Now, authorities in the state of Andhra Pradesh have launched a campaign ahead of this year’s festival in September for eco-friendly Ganeshas.  They’re pushing for the use of statues made of clay instead of the usual plaster of Paris. Clay, they say, dissolves quickly and does not harm aquatic life. Idol-makers are being trained to use natural colors instead of chemicals for painting the statues. The campaign also urges people to remove plastics and other decorations put on the idols before they are immersed in the water.


August 23, 2011



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