The countdown to the big day of Ganeshotsav has started in earnest since the celebration is only ten days away on September 19. This weekend, September 9–10, most huge idols will be transported from workshops to pandals.
There is no ‘aagman’ (arrival) parade because the crowd-puller statue of Lalbaugcha Raja is carved on-site.
This season, the Lalbaugcha Raja Ganeshotsav Mandal has purchased insurance from New India Assurance worth Rs 26.54 crore. The coverage covers risks such as fire, theft, accidents, stampedes, terrorism, and prasad poisoning. It lasts from August 24 through October 23.
Mangesh Dalvi, Mandal Treasurer, provided the breakdown: “Of Rs 26.54 crore, Rs 12 crore is for personal accident cover for devotees, trustees, registered executives and volunteers, residents, staff, including security personnel and watchmen.”
In the event of a tragic incident, each victim is eligible for compensation of up to Rs 5 lakh. Every individual who has received a Lalbaugcha Raja mandal identity card will be considered eligible.”
“A further sum of Rs 5 crore is towards third-party liability, including poisoning by Prasad,” Dalvi said. Damage to the set, all mandaps, and the main entrance is covered for Rs 2.5 crore, while the jewellery and treasures worn by the god or put in the mandap are insured for Rs 7.04 crore.”
This cover cost the mandal Rs 5.40 lakh in premiums. The insurance coverage is somewhat larger than that of Ganeshotsav 2022, when Lalbaugcha Raja purchased a policy for Rs25.6 crore from the same insurer and paid a monthly premium of Rs5.2 lakh.
“This is the largest ‘aagman’ procession not just in Mumbai but in Maharashtra,” stated ACP Kalpana Gadekar. Approximately 1 lakh to 1.25 lakh people participated in various locations ranging from Bakri Adda to Chinchpokli. We had held 4-5 sessions with the mandal to maintain peace and order.”
Arvind Chandanshive, senior inspector of NM Joshi Marg police station, said, A small throng of 3,000 was gathered at the beginning site near Arthur Road Jail, but numbers grew as Chinchpokli bridge approached”.
Lalbaugcha Raja, the mandal with the most footfall, has bought insurance worth Rs 25.6 crore from New India Assurance, for which it is paying a Rs 5.2 lakh premium. “Of the Rs 25 crore, Rs 6.13 crore goes towards ornaments adorning the deity and other valuables,” Mandal president Balasaheb Kamble explained. Personal accident coverage is Rs 12 crore, which is always the largest portion of the overall payout.”