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SPECIAL REPORT: MML’s Ganeshotsav in London

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The 28th Ganeshotsav celebrations spanning ten days of festivities at Maharashtra Mandal London concluded on Sunday  with the immersion (visarjan) of the deity in traditional fervour…reports Asian Lite News

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While prayers were offered every day, cultural programs and other activities took place over the weekend. About 2000 have attended the complete festivities. The chanting of Ganesha names-Attharvaseersha had hundreds of participants each single time it was conducted.

As part of the celebrations, Baal Darbaar was organised during which children have showcased their singing, recitation and dancing skills. An interesting talk on River Saraswati was given by Dr Sharad Hebalkar, editor of Itihaas Darpan, International Research Journal. A retired archaeologist, Dr Hebalkar gave scriptural and archaeological references confirming the existence and the course of the vedic river. An enjoyable Antakshari competition with exciting rounds was conducted in which four teams have participated. Audience were equally participative especially with the questions that were not answered by the teams.

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A mesmerising Kathak performance was rendered by dancer Nikita Banawalikar, which included invocation on Ganesha and Teen Taal. Hardik Vaidya and team presented folk dance of Gondhal and Shruti Limaye presented a lok nrutya. Chief Guest on the occasion and representing High Commission of India was Rahul Nangare, First Secretary (Trade) who spoke eloquently on the contributions of Marathi people and their distinctiveness in the cultural fabric, appreciating the role of Maharashtra Mandal London. The Trustees, office bearers in the Executive Committee and members of the Ganeshotsav Committee have interacted with him briefing him about the 86-year old organisation and its activities, highlighting the recent Bone Marrow registration drive among the community through DKMS.

The concluding day saw the procession (miravnuk) of the deity around Dollis Hill area in the backdrop of drums, lezhim and joyful dancing, followed by the traditional immersion in Thames in Chiswick, attended by Mayor of Hounslow Cllr. Samia Chaudhary.