A Ganesh Bappa that the blind can touch & see
The Sparsh Vinayak pandal at Kandivili in Mumbai has been specially designed for the blind.
Launched by TATA Nx, the pandal at Growels Mall in Kandivali has a specially made three-and-a-half-feet idol with tactile sensory aid to help the blind touch and feel their Ganpati Bappa.
Many visitors said that so far they had only heard from friends and family how Bappa looks like. But now they could actually feel him from the head to the feet and visualize him.
A few members of the World Cup-winning India National Blind Cricket Team, was invited to conduct the morning aarti this week.
The idol has been made by artist Raj Baide using materials like cotton, nylon and wax to provide tactile aids for the blind. Nylon ropes were also used for the decor.
The company behind the idea is 121 Experiences, which said that they felt Ganeshotsav is an inclusive festival and everybody should be able to participate.
They organized it in association with the Eye Bank Association of India, the National Association for the Blind and the Cricket Association of the Blind. They also reached out to all blind schools in the city to ensure maximum participation.
Through the pandal, they also want to increase awareness regarding eye donation and have already received 1.3 lakh pledges from people to donate their eyes.
The organisers do not plan to immerse the idol at the end of the 11-day celebrations, and instead will donate it to an NGO for the blind.