Tinkling of bells and chants of ‘Jaidev Jaidev Jai Mangal Murti, Darshan majhe man kamana purati, Jaidev Jaidev’ heralds the arrival of the elephant god, Lord Ganesh, into the homes of his devotees.
The melodic chanting of ‘Om Ganeshaya Namaha’ marks the beginning of any ritual in the Hindu religion. Lord Ganesh is the epitome of good luck who removes all the obstacles lying in the path of his devotees. He brings prosperity to his worshippers and keeps natural calamities at bay. He is the lord of all that is auspicious and successful and His blessings are invoked before starting anything new. He and the little mouse that is always with Him as His vahan (vehicle) are ideal examples of a balanced life, of how two opposites can co-exist peacefully and harmoniously.
Ganesh festival lasts for nearly a month in the city of Pune with a lot of cultural programmes organised by eminent artists, musicians and dancers. It is a multi-cultural platform for artistes to offer their art and invoke blessings at the feet of the Lord. As this is done on a fairly large scale, a number of Ganesh associations have been formed not only in Pune but throughout the state of Maharashtra.
In Hyderabad under the Nizam’s rule, many Maharashtrians held high administrative positions. The Ganesh festival celebrated by them as a social ceremony thus sprouted roots in Andhra Pradesh. And today, this tradition continues. The unique feature of this festival in Hyderabad is that the artists making the idols of Ganesh compete with each other to make magnificent, tall and elegant idols. If in Khairatabad (in Hyderabad city) at the time of Ganesh festival, look out for the largest Ganesh idol. It’s difficult to miss anyway as sometimes it scales more than 30 feet in height!
Savour these dishes this year and make it an absolute treat on Ganesh Chaturthi.