Amid rising coronavirus COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra, Mumbai’s Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal on Wednesday (July 1) decided not to hold Ganeshotsav in 2020. Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal has announced that a blood and plasma donation camp will be set up in the place of Lord Ganesh idol this time for all 11 days. This is first time ever in the history of Lalbaugcha Raja that the idol of Lord Ganesh will not be set up.
“In view of the coronavirus pandemic this year, the Mandal has decided to hold blood donation and plasma donation Camp for 11 days instead of installing a Ganapati idol,” said Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal treasurer Mangesh Dalvi.
The Raja of Lalbagh was established in 1934 and since then Ganeshotsav is celebrated here with great pomp every year. You can gauge the fame of this Ganapati, also known as the King of Mannat, that in 2019 about 1.25 crore Ganesh devotees visited the King of Lalbagh and offered up to 9 crore rupees to Lord Ganesh. The statue of Raja of Lalbagh is approximately 14 feet high every year, which is the biggest attraction of Ganesh festival in Mumbai.
On the last day of Ganeshotsav, lakhs of devotees attend the immersion journey of the king of Lalbagh, starting from Lalbagh to Girgaum Chowpatty. Due to all these reasons, Lalbaughcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal has decided to not install the Ganesh idol this year.
Notably, Lalbaugcha Raja is the most famous Sarvajanik Ganapati kept at Lalbaug, a locality in Mumbai during the Ganesh Chaturthi festival. The idol of Lord Ganesh is kept here for public display for 11 days before its immersion in the Arabian sea at Girgaon Chowpatty on the auspicious day of Anant Chaturdashi.
Kambli family has been organising the Lalbaugcha Raja Ganapati idol for over eight decades. The family have their workshop in a lane off the main road in Lalbaug, which is very near the pandal.