Dussehra is the time to celebrate, the time to worship divine idols and enjoy the festivities. Cities are decorated with lights, huge pandals are set at various locations that have magnificent idols of gods and goddesses. All this looks amazing during festive season but when it’s over, the same locations are seen overflowing with waste and garbage of the celebration. As a ritual, idols are immersed into the river which pollutes it.
So, while enjoying such celebrations we should not forget our environment. Here are a few tips to guide you through an eco-friendly Dussehra:
Use Recyclable Products- During pooja, prasad and other eatables are distributed to the people at large. Temples also hold large scale feasting for the poor. All these require numerous plates and glasses. We should try to use the products that are degradable; such stuff are easily available in the market. Serving on large leaves is also a good idea.
Create Eco-Friendly Idols- Traditionally, clay was used to make idols of the gods and goddesses. But eventually, to make the idols look more attractive and to keep them intact for long, people started using Plaster of Paris (PoP). But PoP is a harmful element for the environment. When PoP idols are immersed in water, they highly pollute the river. So we should stick to the traditional clay idols. The chemical colors used to paint the idols is also harmful for the river. Try to use organic colors made from flowers.
Avoid Fireworks- In India, fireworks are considered as an indispensable part of celebrations. When the effigy of Ravana is burnt, firecrackers are used in abundance. But to keep our environment safe, we should avoid excessive use of fireworks as it creates noise and air pollution.
Use Environment-Friendly Decoration- During Navratri, the pandals are usually set up with plastic and thermocol which are non-degradable and create excessive amount of waste. We should try to use more paper products. To set up a sturdy pandal, bamboo would also do good. The lightings used to decorate homes and pandals should also be energy saving. Instead of Halogens, use CFL or other energy saving electrical items.
Recycle- After the celebrations are over, try to recycle as many products as you can. The heaps of flowers accumulated afterwards can be used as compost for your plants. If not necessary to immerse the idols in the river, immerse them in a separate water container and use the same water for gardening.
Dussehra is the perfect time to enjoy with your family but keeping the environment in mind is also our responsibility. The right time to start saving Mother nature is now. So, let’s celebrate an eco-friendly Dussehra and set an example for our coming generations.
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