Officials in Mahrashtra have said that as many as 18 people had died during Ganesh immersion ceremonies across the state on Monday. Most people are believed to have died due to drowning.
Ganesh Chaturthi, a popular Hindu festival that started on 13 September culminated on Monday on what’s known as Anant Chaturdashi.
A report by IANS said that one person drowned in Bhandup in eastern Mumbai in the last 24 hours, while four deaths were reported from Pune, three each in Ratnagiri and Jalna, two each in Bhandara and Satara and one each in Nanded, Buldhana and Ahmednagar.
The death toll could have been higher had five people including three girls not been rescued from Girgaum Chowpatty, where they fell into the sea water as their overloaded boat overturned during the immersion ceremony.
Teams of fire brigade and BMC swimmers immediately rescued them from the water and rushed them to Nair Hospital where they are reported out of danger, added the IANS report.
While public Ganesh mandals preferred to take their idols for immersion to sea shores or rivers, families immersed their smaller idols at homes in buckets of water. To avoid pollution of natural water bodies, many civic bodies had also set up artificial ponds for immersion.
Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar had earned plaudits for choosing to immerse Ganesh idol at home in a bucket to avoid the adverse impact on the environment.