While the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had refused to issue licences for new Ganesh mandals to come up,Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Monday gave his nod for new mandals,the Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samanvay Samiti (BSGSS) claimed after a meeting with the CM to discuss preparations for the festival.
Also present at the meeting were Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar,Home Minister R R Patil,Commissioner of Police Satyapal Singh,Municipal Commissioner Sitaram Kunte,Mayor Sunil Prabhu,Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Rakesh Maria and others.
BSGSS secretary Girish Walawalkar said,Among others,a mandal in Churchgate,Akhi Churchgate Sarvajanik Utsav Mandal,which had its licence pending,will now be granted permission.
After the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) last month granted permission for an extra day,in addition to the existing three days,for loudspeakers to be allowed till midnight,traditional instruments like dhol tasha will be allowed even after midnight. Musical instruments have been allowed to be played during bhajans, added Walawalkar.
In areas around 2000-odd schools in the city,processions will be taken out after 5 pm. While many mandals are situated near schools and colleges,they are denied permission to use loudspeakers. We have requested that we be allowed to use loudspeakers after school. After 5 pm,unless there are night classes,we do not see any reason not to play music, said Walawalkar.
More than one lakh volunteers from the 11,500-odd Ganesh mandals in the city will be trained for disaster management by the Mumbai police in preparation for the Ganeshotsav celebrations,according to Walawalkar.
Ten volunteers will be selected from each mandal for a one-day training,where they will be trained in the basics of disaster management. They will be trained by their respective police stations, he said.
Visarjan spots will be monitored through CCTV cameras on days of idol immersion. BMC has been asked to install CCTV cameras at visarjan spots like the Chowpatty, Walwakar said.