“Ganesh Chaturthi” a devotional festival of prayers, blessings, culture, colours, beauty, emotions, celebration, earning and unity. A Well-known festival of India, especially in Maharashtra region for which the celebration goes long around 10-11 days. Like every year 2020 was also started with lots of planning and celebration ideas for the festival, where numbers of individual have targeted their income throughout the festival days and their annual planning’s based on that income. The festival arrives but not with the same bang but with the same reverence inside the individual’s soul. Unity among the people was always there during the festivals but this time the unity which was seen was not a physical togetherness, it was a unity of understanding, emotions and responsible behaviour. People have not celebrated the festival by gathering at a single place, but they have celebrated it by gathering the same emotions at their own places. From the 1st day of the festival a self-motivated discipline was seen among the people, which was something never seen.
As the welcome of the God “Ganesha” used to be a huge celebration, in the same way farewell of God also used to be a highly overwhelming event. Current difficult situation has treated the people with a self-learned lesson of responsibility. Where like every year people welcomed the God with same passion but in an eco-friendly way, many have tried their own art and craft skills by designing handmade sculpture of god using eco-friendly soil by avoiding POP (plaster of Paris). Designing decorative materials at home using easily available sources was also something which was in the trend. Farewell of the God was also chosen in eco-friendly way by staying at their home. However, the COVID situation has resulted in a huge loss for business market but learning and use of online platform for buy and sell was increased in huge number which made people to get more skilled with upcoming technologies and digital marketing tools. The above behaviour and sudden change in people’s mindset during the festival in COVID was resulted in reduction of carbon footprint of individuals. However, the reason was different for choosing the eco-friendly way, to avoid the stepping out and virus infection but the result was in the favour of our wellbeing. People might not get the same economic opportunity but somehow, they found a new way of marketing and earning, which surely will a beneficial for them in upcoming days.
However, situation is difficult, but we know how to fight with them with the same bang and passion which we used to have during our national festivals. As we have that fighting spirit in our nerves!!
That’s the beauty of our nation’s culture and the need of our present for our sustainable future.
Rajkumari M. Suryawanshi