Hyderabad: The Ganesh Chaturthi festival today began with religious fervour in Hyderabad and across Telangana with devotees thronging to temples and pandals to seek blessings of the deity.
Devotees gathered in large numbers in the Khairatabad area here to catch a glimpse of the city’s most famous and tallest Ganesha idol, measuring around 57 feet.
Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Governor E S L Narasimhan along with his wife Vimala Narasimhan performed a special puja at the Khairatabad Ganesh pandal. They were accompanied by leaders of different political parties.
The governor also extended his greetings to the people on the occasion.
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The devotees offered a 75-feet-long ‘Shesha Vastram’ (cloth wrapped around the shoulders of the idol), which was wrapped around the shoulders of the Ganesha idol, at Khairatabad.
An estimated 1,25,000 idols, including those in residential apartments, are expected to be installed in the limits of Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, said Bhagawanta Rao, the president of Bhagyanagar Ganesh Utsav Samiti, the body overseeing Ganpati celebrations in the city.
The pandals, decorated with flowers, were erected in almost every nook and corner of the city.
A major feature of the Ganesh festival this year is the promotion of clay Ganesh idols for worship.
The Vinayaka Chaviti festivities were being celebrated with pomp and gaiety in various districts of Telangana with installation of idols of Lord Ganesha of different sizes.
People visited Ganesh temples across the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad and offered their prayers and performed special prayers.
Security was stepped up with the deployment of over 24,000 police personnel. Elaborate arrangements were being made for the smooth conduct of the immersion of Ganesh idols on September 5 in the city.
The Hyderabad police said all Ganesh pandals in the city were geotagged to monitor them and prevent any untoward incident during the Ganesh Chaturthi festival.