From bringing Lord Ganpati’s idols home, decorating a nicely scrubbed area to place the idol, preparing modaks and dressing in one’s best to perform aarti, to bidding adieu (visarjan), households and Ganesh mandals are sharing all this on the web.
A website http://www.ganpatimandal.com designed by engineering students and illustrated by a fine arts student, is offering households and mandals more web presence of the festivities.
Supported by OMCV, an IT company, the website reaches out to five lakh people on social media and has logged 45,000 likes. At least 5,000 households and mandals have registered with the website. “We have enquiries from London while one person from Bahrain has registered,” says Rahul Pawar, COO of OMCV.
“In just 20 days, we came up with this unique way of connecting people spiritually,” says 20-year-old Pradnyesh Molak, an engineering student with G H Raisoni College of Engineering.
Molak and his friend Amol Shinde from the same college and Samruddhi Kadulkar, a fine arts student of Abhinav Arts College, had come up with the idea to connect people via the social media.
“There are so many people who cannot go to Mumbai to see Lalbaugcha Raja and Mumbai’s Raja-Ganesh Galli. By getting these mandals on our website, citizens can get a dekko of events and other celebrations. In Pune too, some famous Ganesh mandals have registered,” Molak said.
Actor Nana Patekar is featured on the website. Setting up a web page usually costs Rs 1,500. The students are offering households five pages for Rs 201, and to Ganesh mandals for Rs 1,001. To see to it that there is no unwanted content, a special advisory committee checks the website, the OMCV COO said.
Their teams are visiting households that have requested camerapersons and content writers to note festivities for the web page.
“We got several requests from Pimple Gurav in Pune and Wadala in Mumbai,” says Molak. A competition for Rate and Vote the best Ganpati has been organised. There are plans to book idols online next year.