Udupi: 'Jeeva Ganapa' - life to spring out of immersed Ganesha idols

Harshini Brahmavar

Daijiworld Media Network - Udupi (SP)

Udupi, Sep 13: Vinayachandra, a social activist and environmentalist, along with Sathish Madhyastha and other friends, has come out with a novel idea for celebrating Ganesha Chaturthi this year. These people, who have so far undertaken several measures since long towards supporting environment protection and spreading greenery, have been very popular with the people of the town and elsewhere.

Making Ganapathi idols with clay has been in vogue since centuries. But no one would have thought of breathing life into these idols. Vinayachandra, Sathish Madhyastha, Premananda Kalmady and Sasthan friends have come together to do this magic for good reason.

The organization, 'Mission Earth', has distributed idols of Lord Ganapathi all over this district, with the 'Jeeva Ganapa' concept. Under this concept, after immersing the idol of Lord Ganapathi, the seeds and saplings found there are meant to be planted to spread awareness about environment. Seeds of sandalwood, golden bamboo, tamarind, soapnut etc have been concealed inside 'Jeeva Ganapa' idols.

Satish from Maravanthe in Kundapur taluk has created hundreds of Beeja Ganapas. The idols take ten to 30 days to completely disintegrate. From then, within 15 to 25 days, the seeds will sprout. Several kinds of vegetation like sandalwood, golden bamboo, soapnut, tamarind etc will cover our courtyards thereafter. For spreading greenery, Satish Madhyastha has made about 300 tiny Ganapathi idols during his free time since a month. In spite of being a professor, he has created these idols for supporting the cause of environment.

As different kinds of seeds have been kept inside these idols, those who take the idol have to drop two to three spoonfuls of water every day on the idol.

Vinayachandra reveals that the concept of 'Beeja Ganapa' took shape in his mind as he disliked the thought of idols using poisonous colours getting immersed in drinking water. Having been inspired by this idea, he has created these 'Jeeva Ganapa' idols, with the support of his friends. He did not make the idols in tune with the demands. He confesses that this new experiment brought him happiness and even the children adore these idols. He wants people to take a pledge to celebrate Ganesha Chaturthi in an environment-friendly way. He has not created these idols with an eye on revenue. He says that about 200 idols were sold on a single day on September 10.

It is easy to immerse 'Jeeva Ganapathi' idols. If 20 to 50 ml water is poured on the head of this idol, within 15 to 25 days, Ganapathi will bring life to earth as he emerges in the form of saplings.