Ganesha Chaturthi celebration 2023

The scout and guide group revered for legacy between the quaint residences of Malleshwaram is an open unit that deeply believes that Scouting is a way of life, the core belief passed on through generational transactions. Apart from the scouting lessons of Camping, Pioneering, first aid and Proficiency badges, Sri Chamundi Scouts and Guides Group sheds light on celebrating festivities with grandeur, instilling the sense of faith and tradition in the growing minds.

The Legacy

Nestled in the culturally rich region of Malleshwaram, Sri Chamundi Scouts and Guides Group stands full of life, breathing and functioning for 365 days of the year for over a 100 years, everyday.

The scout and guide group revered for legacy between the quaint residences of Malleshwaram is an open unit that deeply believes that Scouting is a way of life, the core belief passed on through generational transactions. Apart from the scouting lessons of Camping, Pioneering, First aid and Proficiency badges, Sri Chamundi Scouts and Guides Group sheds light on celebrating festivities with grandeur , instilling the sense of faith and tradition in the growing minds.

Ganesh Chaturthi has been one major festival that holds a sacred space in the legacy of Sri Chamundi Scouts and Guides Group. Year after Year, Mud-made Ganesha is welcomed with uniquely beautiful themes, a joyous celebration spans over a week till the Final Mahmanglarthi followed by the Visarjan every year.

Days of Ganesha celebration were held in the stories bound, decades old den; which further shifted to the stage adjacent to it over years. And this is a report on the love for space, stars, respect for ISRO and the making of our Ganesha Celebration with the Chandrayaan mission as the theme, with sparkling stars and a full moon dropping down as the backdrop with satellites, made with tiny hands.

ISRO’s Golden Feat

“On September 02, 2023, at 11.50 hrs, the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C57) successfully launched the Aditya-L1 spacecraft, from the Second Launch Pad of Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC), Sriharikota

~This is the sound of news channels, radios and most voices discussing this success.

This recent accomplishment of ISRO has left a profound impact on the young minds, and there is a small incident that reflects the same.

Sri Chamundi Scouts and Guides group celebrates Ganesha Chathurthi by organising multiple competitions for the Scouts, Guides, Cubs and Bulbuls. This year, on one particular occasion, of the Drawing and colouring competition, there was no theme given. Little children sat on a blue and red carpet, ready to express their curious thoughts through art. And 60% of the Cubs and Bulbuls drew a rocket, or a moon, or a spacecraft or the universe. This mere incident is proof that ISRO has successfully plunged young minds in the direction of Space, rockets and stars along with their launch of PSLV-C56. This is a defining moment for the generation, as a nation and ISRO has beautifully achieved it. We congratulate ISRO for all the efforts, celebrated successes and embraced failures. ISRO teaches us the importance of flying, but also the importance of falling, before flying again.

The Making

After an interactive brainstorming session, ideas flowed into each other, finally arriving at the theme of the year- Chandrayaan Mission.

The making of the set involved small steps. It began with making silver squares that neatly folded into double stars. 600 cut papers became origami stars with little stars folding them.

The team of Rovers and Rangers led by Ar.Anirudh Shashidhar took over from here on, a set that was put together in 24 hours. It began sticking multiple black chart papers to form the background, spray painted with light flowy colours, and studded with LED lights that would light up the festive world. Stars hung through coir ropes. A model of Vikram Lander and Pragyan Rover made by scouts and Guides accented the idol.

24 hours of iteration and handwork resulted in a beautiful set , placing Our Lord Ganesha in space, studded with stars and sparkling lights. Subtle colours spray-painted on the backdrop, the moon dropped down in the centre with elements of the Chandrayaan mission seated next to it, in celebration. In grandeur.

The Inaugural Day- Sthapna

Everyone in the group walked up and down the stage, setting the background with a final check to welcome Lord Ganesha. Legend has it that there is a connection with Lord Ganesha and water. Abiding to this laurel, it poured, it rained continuously flooding the ground, raindrops splashing with a force unheard of.

Once the downpour trickled down to a drizzle, the seniors set out in a jeep to welcome the Lord’s idol. A few minutes later, the jeep entered, leaving a heavy trail on wet mud, carrying a mud-made beautiful idol of Lord Ganesha and Maa Gowri.

With Ganapati welcome chants, the idol was finally placed in front of the moon with two traditional lamps lit on either side. As tradition calls, this was followed by the devotional Bhajans of the group followed by Prasadam distribution.

The week of Joy

The festive spirits were carried through the week in the form of competitions that involved creativity.

Each day presented a new challenge and competition to the children based on their competency and age levels.

An usual celebratory evening-

The evening begins with the daily cleaning and lighting of lamps. Cubs, Bulbuls, Scouts and Guides assemble on stage for their respective events, as the sun sets, the sparkling lights on the background turn on. The event is held, and the children participate with eagerness. Followed by Bhajans seated in two groups on either side of the Ganesha Idol, the sound of songs mixing with the devotion in the air.

Each day, there are dedicated slots for the prasadam and each member or parent contributes as per their choice. This is a practice that most members look forward to, it ensures a heartful meal with an array of prasadam consisting of indian delicacies like Sundal, puliogre, chittranna, Gulab Jamun etc each day of the week.

The following competitions were conducted during the celebrations:

Cubs and Bulbuls

19/9/23  Drawing (Crayons and colour pencils)

20/9/23 Diya painting

21/9/23  Fancy Dress

22/9/23 Shloka Recitation

23/9/23 Best out of waste

Scouts and Guides

19/9/23 Painting

20/9/23 Face painting

21/9/23 Mask making

22/9/23 Shloka recitation

23/9/23 Best out of waste

The events painted a smile on all the faces. Days of painting, colours filling life and joy on papers, Diya’s decked with patterns, Cubs and Bulbuls dressing up in a fancy dress, masks becoming alive in an hour and finally best out of waste, where everyday elements were reused and recycled to arrive at something creative and functional, something the scouts and guides were proud of.

Mahamanglarthi Day- Visarjan

The final day, after a week-long celebration, finally arrived.  The day unpacked with a deep cleaning of the dens and an exhibition of all the artworks, crafts and presentables from the week wrapped with the final setting up of the stage for the Big day. Bright coloured rangoli was gracefully put by the Guides with a smiling Ganesha in the centre. Flowers were arranged, Diya’s were lit and the idol worshipped.

The Mahamangaarthi began with the ritualistic bhajans, followed by some cultural events like classical dances and shloka recitals.

The stage was sparkling with lights and lamps, traditional ethnic attires like Sarees, Panache, Kurta’s, colours and faces of people gathered in festive spirits.

The Guest of Honour for the day was Mr. PGR Sindhia, the state chief commissioner of the Bharat Scouts and Guides. Sir’s birthday was celebrated in SCSGG’s way, where all the members of the group including Scouts, Guides, Cubs and Bulbuls signed a greeting card and handed it over with love. It was a wonderful moment to share this joyous evening with dignitaries.

Our Group leader Sri Narasimha Murthy sir addressed the gathering followed by Sr. PGR Sindhia sir.

Sri.N Srinivas(LT) also graced the occasion as one of dignitaries.

As the Mahamangalrthi song Namo Namo was being sung, A plate carrying the sacred flame was used to worship Lord Ganesha. Flowers and Akshate kaal were distributed to the crowd, who prayed in silence and sound. Prasadam was arranged and distributed to all those who graced the occasion.

As a tradition followed every year, round two of Bhajans were sung followed by thunderous drum beats, to which all the group members danced with all their heart. After rounds of dancing to the beat, Lord Ganesha was lifted and placed in a van, ready to be driven to Sankey tank, for the Visarjan.

And as the van drove past our century old ground, it was a reminder to evolve. The theme of the year was a reminder to constantly strive, to become a better version of ourselves.

We, as a family, thank ISRO for all the commendable achievements and growth, it is an inspiration to generations to come. And nothing is more beautiful than leaving a moon print on a child’s mind.

The visarjan and the theme of the year, Chandraayan mission reflected a deep meaning, to let go of the current version, to launch yourself beyond comfort zones, to grow and BECOME.

-Vajjrashri Anand