Ganesh Chaturthi In The Time Of COVID-19; Kalash Visarjan Will Be New Normal


Lord Ganesh festival is just a few weeks away and the preparation for it can be seen on the streets. People have started booking the lord Ganesh idols keep in view the guidelines given by the government to celebrate religious festivals. Ganesh Utsav too like other festivals will be celebrated amidst the COVID crisis. However, a local designer has come up with an innovative idea for safe visarjan in the pandemic situation.

Artist Tushar Sawant from Andheri has manufactured pots (Kalash) of varied sizes that can be used for Ganesh visarjan during the pandemic, allowing celebration and rituals alongside ensuring social distancing norms. It has made keeping in mind the safety measures. The government in its guidelines has urged people to avoid public gathering, especially during the festivals.

Artist Tushar Sawant says, “In such times when the government has already put a cap on the number of people allowed for visarjan, the first thought for many is to do the visarjan at home. I also heard many of my friends talking about using a tub or bucket for the same. This made me wonder if it was okay to use a bucket for visarjan that we use for other purposes. So I came up with this concept of a Kalash.”

“The Kalash can be used for visarjan of both POP and clay idols. POP may take a longer time than clay idols. Hopefully, this eco-friendly visarjan will catch on,” he further added. He also stated, “One clay (earthen) idol will take an hour or so to dissolve in water.”

The Kalash is made of fiberglass material which Sawant guarantees can be used for 2-3 years for several viasarjans, depending on its size. It is available in sizes from 22 inches to 40 inches and has a small outlet at the bottom to drain the water. While one Kalash can be used for multiple years, it can also be used for multiple idols for visarjan at a single time.

The idea is that one Kalash can be used for multiple households in one housing society. This will allow ways to conduct the ritual ensuring social distancing and I hope will also help in changing the mindset about visarjan.” The cost for a Kalash varies from  ₹3,500- ₹10,000, depending on the size.

Well, this is surely a good concept to celebrate Ganesh Utsav that will not breach the guidelines and the sacrosanct aspect of the festival will remain as it is! And it is environmentally friendly as well.

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