Didn’t catch a glimpse of Lalbaugcha Raja last year? Here’s your chance to take his blessings again. A Charkop-based mandal has made a replica of the idol, having hired the same sculptor and dress and jewellery designers.
In the last few years, Mumbai has seen the trend of people celebrating the Maghi Ganesh Festival (the birth of Ganesha), which starts from February 13. More than 100 mandals as well as individuals buy Ganesh idols to celebrate this day and worship it from one and a half to seven days.
The kind of devotion Lalbaugcha Raja sees every year has left even the organisers surprised. “Mandals and people from across the state take home replicas of Raja because of their faith. We see the same trend even for the Maghi Ganesh Festival,” secretary of the Lalbaugcha Raja Saravajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal, Sudhir Salvi said.
Sculptor Santosh Kambli, jewellery designer Nana Vedak and dress designer Rupesh Pawar together made the replica for the mandal in Charkop. Vedak said he was asked to make the same jewellery that originally adorned Lalbaugcha Raja. Nearly 70 mandals approach him every year to make the jewellery for their idols.
Sculptor Kambli said, “The original 12 feet high Lalbaugcha Raja took me a year to make. The replica for the Charkop mandal is around 8-10 feet. With every passing year, the demand for idols for the Maghi Ganesh Festival increases. This year, I got orders from 5 mandals and 10 individuals.”
Nikhil Gudekar, president of the Charkopcha Raja Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal, said, “The locals demanded that we replicate Lalbaugcha Raja and so we decided on it. Every year, thousands of people turn up to worship this idol on all seven days.”
According to the presidnet of the Charkopcha Raja Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal, Nikhil Gudekar said that locals demanded a replica of Lalbaugcha Raja and so the mandal decided to do so by hiring the same people involved.