The season of celebrations in India is full of enthusiasm, devotion and energy, so is the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi. The preparations for the annual festival usually begin a month ahead of the ‘puja’. An important component of which is a large number of big and small idols (moorti’s) used for worship, which becomes the spotlight of the celebration. The spirit of celebration lies in the idols made up of a variety of materials such as the Plaster of Paris (PoP), clay, paper, and harmful chemical colours. Fairly ignoring the level of damage the Plaster of Paris, plastic ornaments and harmful colours could cause to the water bodies, directly or indirectly, either to the aquatic life, or the human digestive system, the practise of immersing the idols into water bodies continues till date. There has been enough hue and cry over the past few years to create an awareness regarding the harmful impacts of PoP as well as the added ill effects of toxic colours and accessories like jari or plastic jewellery, aluminium foils. Unfortunately, the movement towards a reduction in the use of PoP idols seems minimal. Every year there are several awareness drives launched by the Central and State pollution control Boards (CPCB and SPCB) which go largely unheeded. As a result, the impacts on the quality of water in the water bodies have deteriorated over time. The people usually see the economic benefits of purchasing the PoP idols that overshadow the harmful environmental impacts.
To arrest this situation, Parisar Asha has been conducting Eco-friendly Ganpati Making Workshop for the past 6 years to create awareness about the harmful effects of worshipping POP idols. The workshop also aims at training children and individuals to create their own idols using shadu clay which is water soluble clay and made from the earth’s dust. Apart from imparting training about creating eco-friendly ganpati idols the initiative also aims at creating change makers who further carry the messages in their community to bring about a greater change.
Our mission to provide a joyful, holistic and child centric quality education through the environment,for the environment, that will empower children to be creative, sensitive & successful positive global citizens.