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Telangana HC refuses to revoke ban on immersion of plaster of paris idols in lakes

The government sought in its review petition for exemption from the ban for this year and said it would strictly implement it from the next year.

By: Express Web Desk | Hyderabad |
September 14, 2021 10:39:40 am
The government sought in its review petition for exemption from the ban for this year and said it would strictly implement it from the next year. (Representational/Reuters)

The Telangana High Court on Monday refused to intervene in its earlier order that imposed a ban on immersion of Ganesh idols made of plaster of paris (PoP) in Hussainsagar or any of the other lakes in Hyderabad. The court had given its order on Thursday, following which various organisations in support of Ganesh idol immersion sought government intervention in the matter.

The bench led by Acting Chief Justice MS Ramchandra Rao and Justice T Vinod Kumar rejected the government’s review petition and made it clear that it would not accept any such request that allows pollution of lakes, though the government was free to challenge the order.

“We respect religious sentiments, there is no scripture that says that we should only pray to Lord Ganesha idol made in plaster of paris”, said Justice Rao.

The government sought in its review petition for exemption from the ban for this year and said it would strictly implement it from the next year. The bench reminded the state government that it was its own doings that had resulted in the situation as it failed to implement the directions of the Supreme Court, the high court, and the Central Pollution Control Board. It said the bureaucracy and the administration have created the present situation and it is up to them to figure out a solution.

On Sunday, Minister for Animal Husbandry Talasani Srinivas Yadav while speaking about the government’s decision to file a review petition had said that the authorities would take all precautions to avoid pollution of Hussainsagar lake and would clean up the lake within 48 hours of completion of immersion of idols. While the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation has already created 25 ‘baby ponds’ for immersion of smaller idols, the minister said that it was not possible at this moment to create the necessary number of such baby ponds in the wake of a ban on immersion of PoP idols in Hussainsagar lake. The court had also rejected a house motion on the court’s directions on Sunday.

The representatives of Bhagyanagar Ganesh Utsav Samiti, an umbrella organisation that coordinates immersion of idols in city lakes, maintained that they have not received any orders or instructions from either the high court or the state government regarding the ban on immersion of PoP idols in the Hussainsagar lake.

Over 60,000 Ganesh idols are immersed in Hussainsagar lake and other city lakes over ten days of Ganesh Chaturthi festivities every year. While clay idols have been promoted by the state government in recent years, most of the idols used by the public are made of PoP. The tallest Ganesh idol in the city is at Khairatabad with a height of 40 feet.

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