Wednesday June 20, 2018
Home India Man prays to ...

Man prays to Elephant-headed Deity, Ganesha to stop frequent Jumbo deaths in Coimbatore

Seven elephants had died in the surrounding areas of Coimbatore recently within a short span of time

3
//
340
Maha Ganapati Yagam. Image Source : The Hindu
Republish
Reprint
  • Recently, there have been consecutive deaths of elephants in the Nilgiris and other surrounding areas of Coimbatore
  • Vikas Muntot, a resident of Coimbatore, decided to organise a Maha Ganapati Yagam and pray for the cause
  • Other than that, he appealed to the Forest Department to ensure proper food and water for the elephants in forests

The Hindu mythology boasts of an extremely diverse set of Gods and Goddesses. One of the many Gods is Lord Ganapati or Lord Ganesha, who incidentally has  a head of an elephant. He is considered to be the God of wisdom. Ganapati festival is highly popular in Maharashtra and is slowly spreading to other parts of India as well. So, when elephants in certain parts of India started dying consecutively, a man named Vikas Muntot decided to pray to Lord Ganesha for their safety.

Lord Ganapati. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons
Lord Ganapati. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons

Seven elephants had died in the surrounding areas of Coimbatore recently within a short span of time. Originally belonging to Rajasthan, Vikas had been settled in Coimbatore for quite some time now and he wanted to do something about the sudden deaths of these elephants. Evidently, the immediate thing that came to his mind was to organise a puja or Yagam for the purpose. Yagam is a Hindu ritual involving fire and ghee. Yagams are often resorted to in order to inaugurate, purify or consolidate one’s desires. In this case, it was Ganapati Yagam because who else other than the Elephant headed God himself would be more concerned about the death of elephants.

Many other people joined Vikas in his endeavor and the Yagam was performed successfully with a very systematic approach. Vikas himself made arrangements for everything and others helped him.

Elephants in their natural habitat. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons
Elephants in their natural habitat. Image Source : Wikimedia Commons

Follow NewsGram on Twitter: @newsgram1

He also appealed to the Forest Department to arrange for proper water and food for the elephants in the forests so that none of them dies of hunger or thirst at least. “Encroachments in the forest areas also have to be removed by the authorities. Even wild elephants are docile and they will not come our way unless we disturb them. We make them our enemies by lighting crackers,” reported The Hindu.

Follow NewsGram on Facebook: NewsGram.com

With the wildlife of India being in extremely harsh natural conditions and scarcity of food and water, the loss of lives of the animals has become inevitable. Even most of the zoos are very reluctant about taking proper care of the animals. It is high time that we take some steps to stop all these things because even though it seems that wildlife does not affect us, it does so to a huge extent. With wild animals getting endangered and extinct, the ecological balance is harmed and therefore it has and it will have a great impact on human life as well. What Vikas Muntot did was commendable and we need to be more like him.

– prepared by Atreyee Sengupta, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: Etrui14

ALSO READ:

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2016 NewsGram

  • Vrushali Mahajan

    There should be valid care taken by the forest department, poojas and yagams wouldn’t help

  • Rohit Kanji

    Why does one need to explain Ganesha as elephant-headed deity? Who is this article written for? Do Indians need to be reminded the very basics?

  • Marta Feio

    What’s on the table?

Next Story

Indian Art Forms in International Festivals Through Sands of Culture Series

We sought new opportunities in Austria, Germany, Italy and Spain, working through agents and driving box office sales to make projects economically viable.

0
It took some convincing to get the Edinburgh International Film Festival to agree to move Shah Rukh's
Thessaloniki International Film Festival hoarding, wikimedia commons

In 1999, as part of a British Council showcase programme, I travelled to the Edinburgh Festival and that set in motion the idea of creating platforms for Indian contemporary and classical art forms across the world.

Working closely with the Festival Fringe, the International Film Festival, the Edinburgh Tattoo and the Edinburgh International Festival, we created an annual offering of work, enlarging our presence from six productions to 16 in a short period. Many thought we were mad, but our long-term objectives paid off in more ways than one. We presented an array of artists: Aditi Mangaldas, Daksha Sheth, Birju Maharaj and Malavika Sarukkai. Mrigaya, the world music group which went on to win the Herald Angel Award at Edinburgh in 2002 and a 5-star review from The Scotsman, Indian Ocean, Lillette Dubey and the Primetime Theatre Group, Adi Shakti, Lushin Dubey, Dadi Pudumjee and the Ishara Theatre Company, are some more names I recollect who were on our entourage. Shah Rukh Khan made his way to Edinburgh in a celebration of the best of Indian arts.

It took some convincing to get the Edinburgh International Film Festival to agree to move Shah Rukh’s “In Conversation” with Nasreen Munni Kabir to a larger venue. They cited examples of having presented the biggest stars, including Sean Connery, in a 300-seat venue. Tickets went on sale and sold out minutes after the box office opened, only to be resold at £100 a ticket! The news made it to The Times front page and the festival organisers, somewhat embarrassed, moved the venue to a 1,000-seat auditorium. Huge crowds gathered at the festival venue. At the after-party, we had to barricade Shah Rukh in a corner, with tables and bouncers guarding him. The Edinburgh festivals hadn’t quite seen something like this before! They were ignorant of work from India as very few shows had ever travelled out.

In 1999, as part of a British Council showcase programme, I travelled to the Edinburgh Festival and that set in motion the idea of creating platforms for Indian contemporary and classical art forms across the world.
Gulzar, Javed Akhtar and Prasoon Joshi at Jaipur Literature Festival, wikimedia commons

The year we presented Ishara Puppet Theatre’s “Transposition”, the infamous liquid bomb incident took place at Heathrow as we landed. Having being evacuated from the airport and shipped to Gatwick, we finally arrived in Edinburgh after a 16-hour delay, only to find that 24 of our 30 outsized puppet boxes and bags had been lost! Each day was spent at the airport warehouse searching for luggage. Five days and three cancelled shows later, the BBC ran a story on our predicament. Hours later, a passenger telephoned Dana Macleod, our coordinator in Edinburgh, to say strange-shaped bags were going around the carousel with stickers bearing her name. The show was back on the road!

Investments in shows and festivals in those early days meant that year-on-year, our balance sheets were red. Co-presenting with existing festivals led to some degree of success, with annual presentations in Singapore, Wellington, Perth and Melbourne. Much of this was a result of networking at the Edinburgh festivals and setting out a plan for collaborations, a strategy we adopted for the next few years. As our footprint grew through Asia to include Hong Kong, Korea and Indonesia, we began to look westwards.

Prompted by our then Consul General, Navdeep Suri, we set up the Shared History Festival in South Africa, to bring about an awareness of a new India and the many opportunities it offered, amongst the one-million strong Indian diaspora. We collaborated with the city of Johannesburg’s annual festival, Arts Alive, to bring about resurgence in the crime-infested Central Business District (CBD) area of New Town. The city planned to use the arts to re-populate the CBD and reduce crime and bring back the local populace. With audiences returning to theatres, New Town has now seen a rise in property prices, new businesses opening and residential blocks being re-built. In Durban and Johannesburg, the arts community and the diaspora who had earlier rejected everything Indian began rediscovering and celebrating their roots. Driven by their need to trace their history many have, since then, travelled back to India.

We sought new opportunities in Austria, Germany, Italy and Spain, working through agents and driving box office sales to make projects economically viable.

Working closely with the Festival Fringe, the International Film Festival, the Edinburgh Tattoo and the Edinburgh International Festival, we created an annual offering of work, enlarging our presence from six productions to 16 in a short period.
Shahrukh Khan was present in Edinburgh Film Festival wikimedia commons

We produced “Bollywood Love Story”, a musical, to reach new audiences. We were amazed to discover how small towns like Einbeck, Stuttgart, Eindhoven and larger ones like Florence, Barcelona and Stockholm had a huge appetite to celebrate and embrace Indian culture. Local arts-attending audiences came to our celebration dressed in Indian attire, belting out words of songs they didn’t understand and eating their versions of Indian food. Exporting Bollywood should be the mainstay of our foreign missions in order to capture hearts and minds of people across the world. From Russia to Egypt and China through Canada I have seen an increasing appetite to present and understand the best of Indian culture.

In today’s polarised world, it is imperative that we use the arts as a window into other cultures, traditions, history and a way of working. The arts know no language and have a universality that allows the viewer to seamlessly absorb and appreciate new experiences. A few years ago, the Globe Theatre, as part of the Cultural Olympiad, commissioned an array of exciting productions played out from Afghanistan and India to Romania and Belarus. Each was distinct and brought to the fore, cultural differences and yet was bound together by the universal language of theatre and performance. Audiences who attended may not have understood the nuances of the languages, but this did not detract them from enjoying what they were witnessing. Pia Behrupiya by Company Theatre was a brilliant piece of original stagecraft. Based on Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night”, the ensemble cast sang, danced and created magic at the Globe. Last year as part of “India70@UK” we were able to present some of the finest of contemporary theatre, dance and music at premium arts venues including the Royal Festival Hall, Barbican Theatre and the Globe.

As the Indian economy continues to grow, the world is curious about India and everything Indian. From exotic locations: Ladhak to Hampi and Ajanta & Ellora to Murshidabad and Varanasi, to a diverse, dynamic and an extremely alive cultural matrix, we have a lot to offer. India needs to create a counter-narrative to that of rapes, murders and religious extremism, absconding businessmen and less then scrupulous business practices that make headlines the world over. The arts can be an anchor for this emerging narrative; not only do they create jobs but also educate and enlighten.

Also Read: Two Men Jailed For Robbing an Indian in Dubai

As the third industrial revolution fades away and we look to the fourth, which will be the coming together of creativity and technology, India is well-placed to be a world leader. Unfortunately, our policies and government are yet to seize the moment and set in place incentives and a route map to the future.

(In our “Shifting Sands of Culture” series, Sanjoy K. Roy, the third of five noted personalities addresses the challenge of taking Indian arts abroad in this article written exclusively for IANS. Sanjoy K. Roy, an entrepreneur of the arts, is the Managing Director of Teamwork Arts, which produces over 25 highly acclaimed festivals across 40 cities worldwide and includes the world’s largest free literary gathering — the annual ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival) (IANS)