It has been a decade and a half since Maniesh Paul started bringing Bappa home and celebrate Ganesh Utsav with much zeal and vigour. “This is such a blessed festivals that’s about devotion, unity, and the joy of celebrating the divine in our lives. It has been 15 years and counting… and there is no looking back,” says an excited Maniesh, who brought Ganpati for one and a half days like every year. “More than we bringing Bappa home, I’d say he has been blessing us with his presence every year,” he adds.
While celebrations this time are big like every year, the actor shares that this year it’s going to be extra special. “My parents have relocated to Mumbai and are now living with us. Earlier, they used to fly down from Delhi every year to be with me, my wife and kids on Ganesh Chaturthi, but since this year they’re living with us in the same house, the celebrations are on an even bigger scale,” he shares, adding that it was his wife Sanyukta Paul, who had first suggested that they start celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi at home.
“And the tradition continues with same amount of enthusiasm every year. Lord Ganesha is very important to my family; we start everything by worshipping Bappa, so when we bring him home, we go all out with the celebrations. There is so much excitement in the family around this time of the year,” states the 42-year-old.
As Maniesh will be doing Ganpati visarjan today, he takes pride in sharing that every year, he makes sure that his idol is eco-friendly. “Many actors today make eco-friendly ganpati idols. In fact, seeing us, a lot of our friends have also started doing that. For the first three years, my wife used to make them at home with clay, but now we get them from farmers in Latur, so it’s a win-win for both of us,” he tells us.
While in the past, the actor would used to perform the visarjan in a bucket at home, it changed over the years. “There is an eco-friendly pool at Lokhandwala road, so we all go and immerse the idol there. Since the beginning, I was very clear that we will not do visarjan in any of the beaches, and we’ve been following that,” ends Paul.