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Ganesh Mantaps in Belagavi are an art form in themselves

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By uday

The Ganesh Mantaps reflect the imagination and creative talent of the people of the Gallis, who come together and form teams and enrich the social life of that area.

One of the most impressive skills is that of the ‘murtikaar’ who sculpts riverbed clay into the perfect head of an elephant, an animal one does not see on the streets every day!

There are almost no misshapen elephant heads in any pandal. Some pandals are theme-based.

One ‘must-see’ pandal for all science-minded children is one at Skypark, Mandoli Road, near Vaccine Depot and Galaxy Hall. Belagavi

An attempt has been made to depict India’s heroic space story.

There is a 10-foot-long model of the Chandrayaan III rocket blasting off, and a 5-foot model of the moon lander, Vikram, soft landing on the rough surface of the moon’s dark side.

mandoli rd ganpati

There is a model of Earth and a map of the moon.

The Indian space story started at the Thumba rocket launching station in 1966.

Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who was heading this station had developed India’s first rocket and India’s new Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, was to press the launch button at 6:10 pm. However, the rocket’s cone was ready only at 4:00 p.m.! But no vehicle was to be found to transport the cone to the rocket !!

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A young Indian scientist, C. R. Sathya, in a moment of inspired ‘jugaad’, grabbed a cycle standing nearby, placed the cone on it, and virtually ran all the way to the launch pad and fixed the cone on top of the rocket.

At 6:10 pm when Indira Gandhi pressed the launch button, this little rocket took off to into the blue skies of our dreams!

The mantap has a rare photograph of this moment captured by Henri Cartier Bresson (the world’s top photographer in 1966).

A befitting slogan for India’s space effort is ‘Auron ke dhwaj par chaand hai, hamara dhwaj chaan par hai !

Ganapati Bappa Morya !

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