A symbol of wisdom and good luck, Lord Ganesha is the most worshipped Hindu god in Maharashtra. Ganesh Chaturthi is a prominent 10-day long festival celebrated across households in Maharashtra during the months of August and September with great pomp and show. Devotees buy Ganesha idols and images and keep him as a divine guest in their house and at the end of the festival, on designated days, this idol or image is taken out ceremoniously and immersed in a river or the sea. These idols are available in different sizes, shapes and poses. Workshops where these idols are made can be seen all over Mumbai, especially in areas like Parel, Chinchpokli and Lalbaug. The village of Pen, about two hours south of Mumbai, is known for its highly skilled artisans who craft lakhs of Ganesha statues annually. Lately, due to environmental concerns that have arisen from the immersion of the idols at the shores of Mumbai, many artisans are gradually moving towards more eco-friendly idol-making techniques like using red soil, fertilisers, natural colour, papier-mâché and other biodegradable materials.

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