With 85% ganesh pandals still awaiting a nod from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and police, the state government has decided to start a single-window system for all permissions required by ganesh mandals, right from erecting the pandals to carrying out processions from next year. The decision was taken in a review meeting convened by chief minister Devendra Fadnavis along with representatives of ganesh mandals on Monday evening.
Ganesh mandals require multiple permissions for their construction on roads and organisation of cultural programs during the festival. This includes the BMC’s permission for constructing pandals, NOC from police for carrying out processions, charity commissioner’s permission for collecting donations, temporary power supply from BEST, and others.
“All these permissions will be made available to ganesh mandals through single-window system from next year,” said an official adding, “it was a demand made by the mandals to which CM responded positively.”
As per a BMC report, on August 20, a total of 771 applications for constructing ganesh pandals were received, of which 89 mandals had been denied permission and 20 were given a thumbs up. While 590 applications are pending with the police alone, 72 are awaiting approval from various ward offices, bringing the total figure of pending applications to 662, which is 85% of the total requests.
The authorities are taking extra precautions while granting permissions for construction of the pandals in view of last year’s Bombay high court order that pandals constructed on roads should not affect traffic.
The chief minister said that the ganesh pandals have been allowed to use loudspeakers till 12am midnight for four days.
He also announced a cash prize for the most beautiful ganesh idol for the first time this year. The award will be given to the sculptor for making the most attractive idol, he declared on twitter on Monday evening. The state cultural affairs department has been asked to come out with details for the same, informed an official.