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Archive for August, 2009

Essl Museum Offers Impressive Insights into the Contemporary Indian Art Scene

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 30, 2009

A New Era of Indian Art
02/09 – 01/11/09, Gallery rooms and exhibition hall

Opening: 01/09/2009, 7.30 p.m.
Curator: Akiko Miki
Exhibition management: Günther Oberhollenzer
International Symposium: 04/09/2009, 10.30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
India – Open House: 12/09 and 13/09/2009, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

KLOSTERNEUBURG.- With the exhibition >CHALO! INDIA. A New Era of Indian Art<, the Essl Museum offers impressive insights into the contemporary Indian art scene.

>CHALO! INDIA. A New Era of Indian Art< explores the present state of Indian contemporary art and the great changes it has gone through in recent years; examining the work of artists who attempt to question the reality of the society and age in which they live by taking subject matters from their everyday surroundings and transforming them through their art into a theatre of life. “Chalo!” means “Let’s go” in Hindi, and this exhibition is an invitation on a journey to encounter the new creativity and energy of Indian contemporary art. It is a visit to “India now” via these works of art, and an exploration of diverse ways of thinking that each visitor may discover for him or herself.- (Akiko Miki)

With more than 100 works by 27 artists, this exhibition encourages visitors to discover the great diversity of Indian contemporary art. >Chalo! India< is the largest presentation of contemporary Indian art in Austria so far.

Subodh Gupta, Bullet, 2007, life-sized Royal Enfield Bullet: brass, chrome ~110 x 225 x 75 cm. Collection of the Artist.
Subodh Gupta, Bullet, 2007, life-sized Royal Enfield Bullet: brass, chrome ~110 x 225 x 75 cm. Collection of the Artist.

Mostly known in Europe for its traditions and spirituality, India is one of the regions in the world that have lived through enormous social changes in recent decades. India’s impressive economic progress has spurred interest in the artistic developments of the country, and Indian artists have attracted heightened attention at the international art market. The show explores the routes chosen by artists from Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Vadodara and other cities to challenge the reality and age in which they live: the rapid economic development, urbanisation and lifestyles, spirituality, dreams, contrasts and contradictions.

Visitors entering the exhibition are welcomed by a life-sized recumbent elephant. It is a female whose hide is covered with swarms of sperm-shaped bindis. The up-and-coming Indian economy is frequently compared to an “awakening elephant”, but the question whether the elephant is just waking up or possibly wounded has been left in limbo by the artist Bharti Kher.

The digital images, paintings and sculptures by Gulammohammed Sheikh prompt associations with miniature shrines and medieval world maps, and some of them also evoke mandalas. Both the video projections shown at the exhibition and a larger-than-life shrine are amalgamations of cultural elements and religions from different periods and countries.

N. S. Harsha repeatedly engages with the entire exhibition space, combining objects with sitespecific paintings on walls or floors. For the present exhibition he has transformed the chairs provided for the museum attendants into works of art, thus reversing the standard situation of attendants watching visitors.

In Jitish Kallat’s panorama photographs, the streets of the city are staged as the theatre of life, details being skilfully manipulated by the artist who fills the picture with contradictory elements that allude to the vicissitudes of time and the impact of modernisation. The auto rickshaw which Kallat has converted into a giant skeleton may be taken as an allusion to terrorist bombings.

Hema Upadhyay and Vivan Sundaram, too, devote themselves to Indian townscapes. Whereas Upadhyay has crafted a poetic model of the Mumbai slums in a huge sculptural installation, Vivan Sundaram used rubbish and refuse to build imaginary towns which she captured on photographs. In both cases the artists draw attention to the people who are obliged to live in slums or to make a living from collecting and selling garbage.

The work of the artist and activist Tushar Joag centres on “UNICELL Public Works Cell”, a fictitious organization of his creation, which imitates government activities and the work of public projects agencies and suggests mock alternative solutions. Among other things, Joag sent eviction orders to thousands of Mumbai residents, informing them that, with a view to mitigating the traffic problems in their areas, a new network of canals was to be built, fashioned on the canals of Venice.

The youngest participants in the exhibition are the artistic collaborators Thukral & Tagra. Their art world reflects the dreams of young people in contemporary India – such as having your own house or emigrating to Europe – and it is hallmarked by the colourful, superficial and kitschy style of their pictures.

The artist Pushpamala N. assumes the roles of women considered typically Indian and known from works of art, the popular media and documentation. She imitates famous Indian paintings of the 19th century, current images of the goddess Lakshmi, scenes from movies as well as photographs and body measuring techniques introduced by the British colonial rulers for classifying the indigenous population. The resulting photographs throw light on stereotypes and reveal how images can be manipulated.

Subodh Gupta uses enormous quantities of mass-produced everyday utensils, mainly milk jugs and bowls made of stainless steel, which he either crafts into imposing sculptural works or uses as accessories – as in the case of the motorbike on display at the exhibition. Gupta addresses the issue of India’s consumer culture as well as the relationship between the exploding conurbations and the rural areas.

Atul Dodiya presents a series of portraits entitled “Saptapadi” and featuring mainly couples. The term is used in the context of the traditional Hindu wedding ceremony. His style is derived from the tradition of popular art and he has borrowed from the kitschy hand-painted Bollywood movie posters which are displayed in all Indian towns.

The exhibition ends with a nostalgic voice emerging from an old-fashioned microphone. It is the voice of Shilpa Gupta who sings the text of Jawaharlal Nehru’s famous speech, “Tryst with Destiny“, delivered before Parliament by India’s first Prime Minister on the eve of the country’s independence. The functions of speaker and microphone have been reversed, so that an official event is transformed into a very private experience, a since India attained its independence.

The exhibition covers a wide range of creative perspectives and forms of expressions and presents artists already well-established in Europe, such as Bharti Kher and Subodh Gupta, as well as numerous newcomers who are in the process of obtaining international recognition.

Press Contact…

Nina Auinger: +43 (0)2243 – 370 50 60,
Regina Holler-Strobl: +43 (0) 2243/370 50 62,

(Source: Sunday, August 30, 2009 – – The First Art Newspaper on the Net)

Posted in Culture (news) | 1 Comment »

The richness of Dikshitar’s compositions (

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 29, 2009

The-richness-of-Dikshitars-compositions-082009-1This article is targeted towards listeners who are familiar with the kacheri repertoire in karnatic music.

Often times, we run into conversations where the superior quality of Dikshitar’s music is stressed. What is it that contributes to this degree of excellence? What are the features to look for in order to appreciate a rendition of the kriti-s of Dikshitar?

In this article, we identify and elucidate five different factors that contribute to the individuality of Dikshitar’s repertoire. The first two are clearly definable as they relate to the technical aspects of the composition in question. The other three aspects go beyond the individual composition and cover a wider and deeper knowledgebase.

Here are the five aspects to look for in the repertoire of kriti-s created by Dikshitar.

Aspect 1: Sophistication in the delineation and exposition of various ragas

  • i) unique gripping portraits of raga
  • ii) a slow and majestic gait that exhudes raga bhava in every microtone (sruti) rendered

A proper rendition of a kriti of dikshitar places demands on the vocalist’s ability to maintain sruti suddha (tonal purity), breath control and the ability to deliver upon jaarus (glide across pitches) spanning more than an octave in some cases.

Aspect 2: the beauty of the sahityas (= literature) and the various forms of textual ornamentation such as

  • i) alliteration
  • ii) skilful use of the name of the raga
  • iii) skilful use of the signatuare of the composer ‘guruguha’

A proper rendition of a kriti of Dikshitar places demands on the vocalist’s ability to render sanskrit lyrics with precision, breath control and the ablity to render ‘madhyama kala sahityas’ with pauses for breath at the right instances so as to render the textual phrases as they ought to be.

Aspect 3: the presentation of details surrounding the deity being addressed — with references to the following

  • i) stala purana (legends related to the temple where the deity is enshrined)
  • ii) reference to Indian puranic lore
  • iii) agama and tantric worship traditions
  • iv) deep philosophical knowledge rooted in the Upanishadic realm
  • v) jyotisha and other realms of knowledge

Given his pluralistic orientation, Dikshitar’s kritis are addressed to a range of deities enshrined at various places in India (particularly in the state of Tamil Nadu with a rich temple heritage) that he visited during his lifetime.

Aspect 4: Variety in the usage of ragas and talas

Dikshitar has composed in all of the 72 raaganga ragas that were enunciated by the parampara of the musicologist Venkatamakhi and in several of the janya (child) ragas. He has also written kritis in a range of tala cycles that have been off limits for most other composers.

Aspect 5: A well laid out scheme of groups of compositions, as in

– the vaara kritis, the panchabhuta linga kritis, the kamalamba navavarana kritis , the tyagaraja vibhakti kritis and so on.

The five aspects above result in the following.

Aspect 6: A marked degree of sophistication that weaves the technical brilliance and the knowledgebase described above into a pictorial essay with the most superior sense of aesthetics.

Mastery over aspects 1 and 2 are necessary conditions for a technically sound rendition of a kriti of Dikshitar, however they are not sufficient for a wholesome rendition of the works of Dikshitar. What is essential for this, is a basic appreciation of the background of the kriti and some of the elements outlined in 3) and an understanding of the context of the compositions (4 and 5 above).

When a Dikshita kriti rendition is complete with all of the five elements above in place, the performer begins to feel a sense of awe as they experience the fullest impact of Aspect 6 and in the process they get transported to a different world. And the effect shows on the listener too.

Kanniks Kannikeswaran

“The author can be reached at

(Source: 08/2009 – | Religion – Temples & More)

Dr. Nagavalli Nagaraj (vocalist) – Dikshitar Kriti “Akhilamdeshwari

Jugalbandi: Dr.Nagavalli Nagaraj & Ranjani Nagaraj (daughter) – Dikshitar Kriti “Mahaganapathim”

Violin maestros Mysore Sri M.Nagaraj & Dr.Mysore M.Manjunath… Raag Kambhoji

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Bangalore: Facebook Developer Garage – 28th Aug, 2009

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 27, 2009

Chakpak Media Pvt Ltd, a leading Bollywood community portal, announced today that it will host the Facebook Developer Garage Bangalore on August 28th, 2009 at the Taj West End. This premier Facebook developer event will feature speakers from Facebook, Chakpak and other Indian companies.


The event is sponsored by Intel and co-hosted with Accel Partners. It is scheduled to take place between 9.30 A.M and 6.30 P.M at the Taj Westend, Race Course Road, Bangalore. It is open to all social network developers, online marketing professionals and Facebook enthusiasts.

The developer’s garage will offer a great chance for attendees to gain insights into how the Facebook platform has evolved, discuss technical ideas and learn more about social media marketing. “We are delighted to host an event that provides a great opportunity for the growing Facebook developer community to share knowledge and learn first hand from their fellow developers,” said Gaurav Singh Kushwaha, Founder & CEO of Chakpak.

Speaker lineup includes:

  • Vishu Gupta, Engineering Team, Facebook
  • Alok Kejriwal, Co-Founder & CEO, Games2Win
  • Nitin Rajput, Co-Founder & COO, Chakpak
  • Mekin Maheshwari, Director Engineering, WeRead
  • Nikhil, Product Manager, MingleBox
  • Vinod Nambiar, Founder & CEO, Position2

To register or for more information, visit the event page

About Chakpak
Headquartered in Bangalore (India), Chakpak ( is among the fastest growing example of an online entertainment community from India, with commendable initial successes around movies. Chakpak offers encyclopedic information around movies including reviews, news updates, celebrity profiles and wallpapers, besides widgets and applications across other social networks such as Facebook.

(Source: 08/2009 –

Posted in Economics (news), Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Bangalore: Nokia Music Store goes live in India on 21st Sept 09

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 27, 2009

Nokia Music Store goes live in India –

by siliconindia news bureau

Bangalore: Nokia has announced the launch of Music Store service in India at Nokia Music Connects (launch on 26th Aug), one of country’s largest music forums. The Music Store from Nokia will offer music lovers access toNokia-Music-Connects-The-Indian-Music-Forum-26th-August-2009-1 over three million international and Bollywood and regional soundtracks across all genres. Sharing details of the India Music Store, Elizabeth Schimel, Vice President, Music, Nokia said “We are delighted to launch our 21st Music Store in India. With over three million tracks, India Music Store will have the most diverse portfolios of content, covering 20 genres and almost 90 percent of the local music in India.”

To deliver the most updated content Nokia has tied up with leading international music labels such as Universal Music Group, Sony Music, EMI and Warner and major independent Indian record labels including Tseries, Yashraj Music, Saregama, BIG Music, Venus and many more. The company has partnered with India’s leading music body, Indian Music Industry (IMI) which is a consortium of over 150 music companies, to give consumers an opportunity to discover and enjoy their favorite music on the go across genres and languages. Nokia has also signed up with GIRI (Giri Digital Solutions, part of Giri Group) in South India and Phoneytunes in North India to access regional content.

Nokia-Music-Store-2009-2“Music is an all-consuming passion with most people, especially in a country like India where it is an intrinsic part of the culture. Nokia is committed to connect people to what matters to them and with our pioneering music services and devices, we are well-placed to bring a great experience and immense value to the consumers,” said Timo Ihamuotila, Executive Vice President, Sales, Nokia.

Nokia Music Store is available in 21 markets across the world and offers people the chance to enjoy music directly on their Nokia device or personal computer.

(Source: Thursday,27 August 2009, 02:13 hrs – | Tech Products)

Posted in Culture (news), Economics (news) | Leave a Comment »

Kolkata (4th Sept): Sur Sangam… in MEMORY OF USTAD ALI AKBAR

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 26, 2009

Bihan Music cordially invites to the Concert of ‘Sur Sangam‘ Indian Classical Inst. Ensemble, composed & concept by…

Pandit Alok Lahiri (Sarode) assisted by Abhisek Lahiri (Sarode).


Music/Arts – Concert
Free Admission.
Friday, September 4, 2009
6:00pm – 9:00pm
Sisir Mancha, Kolkata.

The Concert is organised by Bihaan Music in MEMORY OF USTAD ALI AKBAR KHAN (14th April 1922 – 18th June 2009).

(Source: 08/2009 – Abhisek Lahiri (@ Facebook))

Pt. Alok Lahiri with Pt. Sohonlal Sharma…
Jugalbandhi Sarod & Harmonium (Duet Concert)

Abhisek Lahiri (Sarod) – Rag Desh
evening (08:00-10:00 p.m.) & saisonal raga (monsoon time)

Posted in Live around the globe | Leave a Comment »

Timbó FM @ TIDE 96.0 – Fotoausstellung „Gesichter und Geschichten hinter dem Radio“ (Albrecht Girle)

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 25, 2009

tide-logo-032009-1Albrecht Girle und TIDE freuen sich –
am Montag, 31. August 2009, um 18:00 Uhr
– die Gäste der Fotoausstellung „Gesichter und Geschichten hinter dem Radio“ von TIMBÓ FM im neuen TIDE-Funkhaus begrüßen zu können.

Der Hamburger Stadtsender TIDE weiht die Ausstellungswände seines neuen Funkhauses ein und präsentiert Impressionen vom putzmunteren Bürgerfunk in Uruguay. Die ausgestellte Foto-Reportage des deutschen Journalisten und Fotografen Albrecht Girle zeigt die „Gesichter und Geschichten hinter dem Radio“ von TIMBÓ FM.

Albrecht-Girle-Journalist-Portrait-2008-1Albrecht Girle
– Auslandskorrespondent Mittel- und Südamerika

Geboren: 1945
Beruf: Journalist, Diplompädagoge

Die Bürgerfunk-Station TIMBÓ FM 96.9 hat quasi die Monopolstellung in der tagesaktuellen Lokalberichterstattung der Provinz-Hauptstadt San José de Mayo. Denn die lokalen Dudelfunk-Stationen des kleinen süd- amerikanischen Landes Uruguay sind fast alle in den Händen von Großgrundbesitzern und die staatliche Hörfunkberichterstattung kommt aus der fernen Hauptstadt.

Timbo-Tide960-FM-Communitaria-082009-1TIMBÓ FM ging 2004 als „Piratensender“ on Air, denn bis Ende 2007 sendeten freie Radios in Uruguay illegal. Erst mit einem Gesetz der neuen Mitte-Links-Regierung (am 5. Juni 2007) wurden sie ein anerkannter Teil der Medienlandschaft. Zuerst nur widerwillig wuchs das Vertrauen gegenüber TIMBÓ FM in der Öffentlichkeit. Heute ist der Sender, der weder Gehälter bezahlt noch Werbeeinnahmen bekommt, in San José der einzige Kanal, der frei von Parteien, Kirchen und wirtschaftlichen Abhängigkeiten lokale Informations- und Kommunikationsprogramme ausstrahlt.


Der deutsche Journalist und Fotograf Albrecht Girle begleitete als teilnehmender Beobachter die Radiomacher von TIMBÓ FM im Juni und Juli 2009 mit seiner Fotokamera: „Ich war fasziniert von den Menschen, die wie selbstverständlich unter den einfachsten Bedingungen Wege finden, sich mitzuteilen und dabei selber wachsen, indem sie für die Allgemeinheit Leistungen erbringen“.

reinhören bei Timbó FM | reinhören bei TIDE 96.0

(Quelle: 25.08.2009 | Tide 96.0 –

Posted in IMC OnAir - News | Leave a Comment »

Review: Amidst recession, global art market looks up to India

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 24, 2009

by Ashok Kumar (

(New Delhi-) With as many as many as 16 galleries from abroad, the second edition of the India Art Summit at the Pragati Maidan in Delhi was conspicuous by the considerable growth in the presence of art galleries both from the country as well as overseas marking remarkable growth in the number of participants and presence of the artworks.


Undeterred by the gloom in the global economic scenario, the exhibitors, particularly those from the abroad evinced deep interest in the potential of the Indian art market as some of them called it the ‘market of hope’ amidst the global recession.

Katja W. Ott, representing Beck & Eggeling gallery from Dusseldorf, Germany felt privileged as she disclosed that they are exhibiting in India for the first time and representing five contemporary artists including Desmond Lazaro (UK), Viveek Sharma, Sonia Mehra (India) Chawla, George Martin and Hema Upadhyay.

When asked about the prospects of an art summit in a developing country like India, Katja explained, how, with the societal changes, people in countries like India are becoming increasingly aware of arts making the country a potential place as the art market.

Talking about the impact of recession on the art market, Katja says, “Current global crisis had an impact on art market and the buyers have become more careful, these days. Instead of shares and stocks people these days are investing more and more in arts,” explains Katja.

Stefan Wimmer, managing partner, Beck & Eggeling (Germany), talking about the Indian art market feels that with the welfare growing in the developing countries, like India, and a greater number of people living a better life, the potential is all set to grow. Talking about the India art summit he says, “It has been a good chance for the European art galleries to come and explore the Indian art market,” Stefan summarises.

Ashna Jaipuria, director of Viart, posing for photo at her stall, at the India Art Summit in New Delhi.
Ashna Jaipuria, director of Viart, posing for photo at her stall, at the India Art Summit in New Delhi.

Ashna Singh Jaipuria, director of Viart, a New Delhi based contemporary Indian art gallery, candidly shares how she developed a deep interest in art despite having no formal academic education in the field. “I did not have any art education, but got the basic understanding of art, through various catalogues and art exhibitions that came across my way,” confides Ashna.

When asked to comment on the driving factors that keep her going ahead in this field, Ashna says, “The curiosity for creativity and a pure passion to strive for excellence and perfection keeps me alive in the business (of art market)”.

When asked how much business she looks forward to despite the downturn, Ashna, brimming with confidence, said, “I am seriously hopeful about the sales, despite the downturn. There is a professional class, who buys art, for the sake of sound investment,” educates Ashna.

Elina Zuzane of the Galerija 21 of Latvia came to the India Art Summit, to experience something different. “Everyone is moving to the West. We felt India has not had enough exposure to Latvian arts, so we have come to represent our country in India,” quips Elina.

Elina, who has earlier worked as a Trend Forecaster, in UK, after finishing her degree, says she entered into the world of art by sheer coincidence. Talking about her understanding of the Indian art, she says, “Indian art is more colourful than the Latvian one, in several aspects such as the use of colours”.

Hwajung Choi, assistant curator at the Arario Gallery that has branches in Beijing, Seoul and New York, feels that more art connoisseurs are showing their interest in the Indian art and it is growing popular with each passing day.

also see: “New Delhi: India Art Summit puts forth a strong case for art without borders

(Source: 08/2009 – Monday , Aug 24, 2009 at 1524 hrs | | News)

Posted in Culture (news), Economics (news), News from India | 1 Comment »

Allianz Deutscher Autorenverbände der Musik gegründet (14.08.09)

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 24, 2009

Am 14. August 2009 wurde in Köln die Allianz Deutscher Autorenverbände der Musik (ADAM) von den Verbänden

DKV Deutscher Komponistenverband e.V.
DTV Deutscher Textdichterverband e.V.
CC Composers Club e.V.
VDM-B Vereinigung Deutscher Musik-Bearbeiter e.V.
mediamusic e.V.

ins Leben gerufen, um bei Bedarf gemeinsame Anliegen mit einer Stimme zu artikulieren.

Folgende Ziele sollen erreicht werden:

  1. Stärkung der Position des Musikurhebers in der öffentlichen und politischen Wahrnehmung als primärer, schöpferischer Ausgangspunkt. Erst nach seiner kreativen Leistung können nachgelagerte kulturelle und ökonomische Formen der Nutzung und Verwertung seiner Werke erfolgen. Ohne Lied kein Sänger.
  2. Stärkung eines durchsetzbaren Urheberrechts als Grundlage und Anreiz zur Investition persönlicher und gesellschaftlicher Ressourcen in eine zukunftsfähige, innovative, identitätsstiftende, vielfältige und lebendige Musikkultur.
  3. Stärkung und Fortentwicklung des Modells einer kollektiven Rechtewahrnehmung durch staatsentlastende Verwertungsgesellschaften als unverzichtbare Selbsthilfeorganisationen der Musikurheber und ihrer Musikverleger. Sie ermöglichen Inkasso, Verteilung sowie soziales und kulturelles Engagement im Sinne ihrer Mitglieder und im Einklang mit dem Urheberrechtswahrnehmungsgesetz.
  4. Entschiedene Verurteilung und Ächtung von „Businessmodellen“, die, insbesondere in der digitalen Welt des Internets, keinen Respekt vor dem geistigen Eigentum der Urheber aufbringen, indem sie deren angemessene Vergütung als selbstverständliche Voraussetzung für jegliche Nutzung ihrer Werke verweigern.
  5. Unverzichtbare Mitwirkung und Konsultation der Musikurheberverbände bei allen wesentlichen Diskursen, die deren Rechte und berufliche Rahmenbedingungen berühren, verändern, planen oder gestalten. Es ist nicht akzeptabel, dass in maßgeblichen Gremien und Institutionen, die die existentiellen Grundlagen der Musikautoren entscheidend beeinflussen, „über uns“ geredet wird, anstatt mit uns!

ADAM ist erreichbar über

(Quelle: 24.08.2009 – DMV | – Archivierte News)

Posted in IMC OnAir - News | Leave a Comment »

Ganesha Hymn (Aarti) – Jai Ganesh, Jai Ganesh!

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 22, 2009

Jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh deva
Mata jaki Parvati, pita Mahadeva.

Ek dant dayavant, char bhuja dhari
Mathe par tilak sohe, muse ki savari
Pan chadhe, phul chadhe, aur chadhe meva
Ladduan ka bhog lage, sant kare seva.

Jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh deva,
Mata jaki Parvati, pita Mahadeva…

Andhan ko ankh det, kodhin ko kaya
Banjhan ko putra det, nirdhan ko maya
Surya shaam sharan aye, safal kije seva.

Jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh, jai Ganesh deva,
Mata jaki Parvati, Pita Mahadeva…

Listen to the above hymn in Real Audio (Courtesy: Rudra Centre)


English Translation of the Hindi Hymn:

Glory to you, O Lord Ganesha!
Born of Parvati, daughter of the Himalayas, and the great Shiva.

O Lord of compassion, you have a single tusk, four arms,
A vermilion mark of on your forehead, and ride on a mouse.
People offer you betel leaves, blossoms, fruits
And sweets, while saints and seers worship you.

Glory to you, O Lord Ganesha!
Born of Parvati, daughter of the Himalayas, and the great Shiva.

You bestow vision on the blind, chastened body on the leprous,
Children on the sterile, and wealth on the destitute.
We pray to thee day and night, please bestow success upon us.

Glory to you, O Lord Ganesha!
Born of Parvati, daughter of the Himalayas, and the great Shiva.

Listen to the above hymn in Real Audio (Courtesy: Rudra Centre)

(Source: since 1999 – | Subhamoy Das (Hinduism Guide))

Shree Ganeshay Dheemahee – Ganesh Chaturthi 2009

Posted in Culture (news) | Leave a Comment »

Close to Ganesh Chathurthi… Celebration on Sun, 23rd August 2009 – Ten days long…

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on August 22, 2009

decorations for the Ganesh Chathurthi in Ahmedabad (India) - © AP

decoration for the Ganesh Chathurthi in Ahmedabad (India) - © AP

Ganesha Chaturthi (IAST: Gaṇeśa Caturthī, devanagari: गणेश चतुर्थी) or Ganesha Festival is a day on which Lord Ganesha, the son of Shiva and Parvati, is believed to bestow his presence on earth for all his devotees. It is also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chavithi in Sanskrit, Kannada, Tamil and Telugu, Chavath ( चवथ ) in Konkani and Chathaa (चथा) in Nepali.

It is celebrated as it is the birthday of Lord Ganesha. The festival is observed in the Hindu calendar month of Bhaadrapada, starting on the shukla chaturthi (fourth day of the waxing moon period). Typically, the day usually falls between 20 August and 15 September. The festival lasts for 10 days, ending on Anant Chaturdashi . This festival is observed in the lunar month of bhadrapada shukla paksha chathurthi madhyahana vyapini purvaviddha. If Chaturthi prevails on both days, the first day should be observed. Even if chaturthi prevails for complete duration of madhyahana on the second day, but if it prevails on previous day’s madhyahana period even for one ghatika (24 minutes) the previous day should be observed.

Ganesha, the elephant-headed son of Shiva and Parvati, is widely worshipped as the supreme god of wisdom, prosperity and good fortune.

While celebrated all over India, it is most elaborate in Maharashtra, Goa (Biggest festival for Konkani people all over the world), Gujarat, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, and other areas which were former states of the Maratha Empire. Outside India, it is celebrated widely in Nepal which was only Hindu Kingdom in the world and Tamil Hindus in Sri Lanka.


The origin of the festival lies in the Holy Hindu scriptures which tell the story of Lord Ganesha. Lord Ganesha (or Ganapati) (the names mean “Lord [isha] or [pati] of Shiva’s hosts [gana]”) was created by Goddess Parvati, consort of Lord Shiva.

According to the legend, Lord Shiva, the Hindu God of resolution, was away at a war. His wife Parvati, wanted to bathe and having no-one to guard the door to her house, conceived of the idea of creating a son who could guard her. Parvati created Ganesha out of the sandalwood paste that she used for her bath and breathed life into the figure. She then set him to stand guard at her door and instructed him not to let anyone enter.

In the meantime, Lord Shiva returned from the battle but as Ganesha did not know him, stopped Shiva from entering Parvati’s chamber. Shiva, enraged by Ganesh’s impudence, drew his trident and cut off Ganesha’s head. Parvati emerged to find Ganesha decapitated and flew into a rage. She took on the form of the Goddess Kali and threatened destruction to the three worlds of Heaven, Earth and the subterranean earth.

Parvati was still in a dangerous mood. Seeing her in this mood, the other Gods were afraid and Shiva, in an attempt to pacify Parvati, sent out his ganas, or hordes, to find a child whose mother is facing another direction in negligence, cut off his head and bring it quickly. The first living thing they came across was an elephant. That elephant was facing north (the auspicious direction associated with wisdom). So they brought the head of this elephant and Shiva placed it on the trunk of Parvati’s son and breathed life into him. Parvati was overjoyed and embraced her son, the elephant-headed boy whom Shiva named Ganesha, the lord of his ganas. Parvati was still upset so Lord Shiva announced that everyone who worships Ganesha before any other form of God is favoured. So Ganesh is worshipped first in all Hindu occasions and festivals.


Before 1893, Ganesh Chaturthi used to be an important public festival during the Peshwa rule in Maharashtra, but that year, Indian freedom fighter and social reformer Lokmanya Tilak transformed the annual festival into a large, well-organized public event.

Tilak recognized the wide appeal of the deity Ganesh as “the god for everybody”, and popularized Ganesh Chaturthi as a national festival in order “to bridge the gap between Brahmins and ‘non-Brahmins’ and find a context in which to build a new grassroots unity between them”, and generate nationalistic fervor among people in Maharashtra against the British colonial rule.

Tilak encouraged installation of large public images of Ganesh in pavilions, and also established the practice of submerging in rivers, sea, or other pools of water all public images of the deity on the tenth day after Ganesh Chaturthi.

Under Tilak’s encouragement, the festival facilitated community participation and involvement in the form of intellectual discourses, poetry recitals, performances of plays, musical concerts, and folk dances. It served as a meeting ground for people of all castes and communities in times when, in order to exercise control over the population, the British Rule discouraged social and political gatherings.

Puja in India…

Two to three months prior to Ganesh Chaturthi, life-like clay models of Lord Ganesha are made for sale by specially skilled artisans. They are beautifully decorated & depict Lord Ganesh in various poses. The size of these statues may vary from 3/4th of an inch to over 25 feet.

Ganesh Chaturthi starts with the installation of these Ganesh statues in colorfully decorated homes and specially erected temporary structures mantapas (pandals) in every locality. The pandals are erected by the people or a specific society or locality or group by collecting monetary contributions. The mantapas are decorated specially for the festival, either by using decorative items like flower garlands, lights, etc or are theme based decorations, which depict religious themes or current events. The statues are worshiped with families and friends.

The priest, usually clad in red silk dhoti and shawl, then invokes life into the statue amidst the chanting of mantras. This ritual is the Pranapratishhtha. After this the ritual called as Shhodashopachara (16 ways of paying tribute) follows. Coconut, jaggery, 21 modakas, 21 durva (trefoil) blades of grass and red flowers are offered. The statue is anointed with red unguent, typically made of Kumkum & Sandalwood paste . Throughout the ceremony, Vedic hymns from the Rig Veda, the Ganapati Atharva Shirsha Upanishad, and the Ganesha stotra from the Narada Purana are chanted.

For 10 days, from Bhadrapad Shudh Chaturthi to the Ananta Chaturdashi, Ganesha is worshipped. On the 11th day, the statue is taken through the streets in a procession accompanied with dancing, singing, and fanfare to be immersed in a river or the sea symbolizing a ritual see-off of the Lord in his journey towards his abode in Kailash while taking away with him the misfortunes of his devotees. All join in this final procession shouting “Ganapathi Bappa Morya, Purchya Varshi Laukar ya” (O father Ganesha, come again early next year). After the final offering of coconuts, flowers and camphor is made, people carry the statue to the river to immerse it.

The main sweet dish during the festival is the modak (modagam or modakam in South India). A modak is a dumpling made from rice flour/wheat flour with a stuffing of fresh or dry-grated coconut, jaggery, dry fruits and some other condiments. It is either steam-cooked or fried. Another popular sweet dish is the karanji (karjikaiin Kannada) which is similar to the modak in composition and taste but has a semicircular shape.

Public celebrations of the festival are hugely popular, with local communities (mandalas) vying with each other to put up the biggest statue & the best pandal. The festival is also the time for cultural activities like songs, dramas and orchestra and community activities like free medical checkup, blood donation camps, charity for the poor, etc.

Today, the Ganesh Festival is not only a popular festival – it has become a very critical and important economic activity for Maharashtra. Many artists, industries, and businesses survive on this mega-event. Ganesh Festival also provides a stage for budding artists to present their art to the public. The same holds true for Hyderabad too.

Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations outside India…

Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in the UK by the migrant Hindu population as well as the large number of Indians residing there. The Hindu culture and Heritage Society, UK – a Southall based organisation celebrated Ganesh Chaturthi for the first time in London in 2005 at The Vishwa Hindu Temple. The Idol was immersed in the river Thames at Putney Pier.

The festival is similarly celebrated in many locations across the world. The Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh USA, an organisation of Hindus based in the US organises many such events to mark the various Hindu festivals.

Celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi in Mauritius dated back to 1896. The first Ganesh Chaturthi Puja was held at the epth of the 7,Cascades Valley in Henrietta by the Bhiwajee family who is still celebrating this pious festival for more than a century.

Over the years the festival gained such popularity on the island that Mauritian government has attributed a public holiday for that day.

Environmental impact…

The most serious impact of the Ganesh festival on the natural environment is due to the immersion of icons made of Plaster of Paris into lakes, rivers and the sea. Traditionally, the Ganesh icon was sculpted out of earth taken from nearby one’s home. After worshipping the divinity in this earth icon, it was returned back to the Earth by immersing it in a nearby water body. This cycle represented the cycle of creation and dissolution in Nature.

However, as the production of Ganesh icons on a commercial basis grew, the earthen or natural clay (shaadu maati in Marathi) was replaced by Plaster of Paris. Plaster is a man made material, easier to mould, lighter and less expensive than clay. However, plaster takes much longer to dissolve and in the process of dissolution releases toxic elements into the water body. The chemical paints used to adorn these plaster icons, themselves contain heavy metals like mercury and cadmium.

On the final day of the Ganesh festival thousands of plaster icons are immersed into water bodies by devotees. These increase the level of acidity in the water and the content of heavy metals. The day after the immersion, shoals of dead fish can be seen floating on the surface of the water body as a result of this sudden increase.

Several non governmental and governmental bodies have been addressing this issue. Amongst the solutions proposed by various groups some are as follows:

  • Return to the traditional use of natural clay icons and immerse the icon in a bucket of water at home.
  • Use of a permanent icon made of stone and brass, used every year and a symbolic immersion only.
  • Recycling of plaster icons to repaint them and use them again the following year.
  • Ban on the immersion of plaster icons into lakes, rivers and the sea.[11]
  • Creative use of other biodegradable materials such as paper mache to create Ganesh icons.
  • Encouraging people to immerse the icons in tanks of water rather than in natural water bodies.

To handle religious sentiments sensitively, some temples and spiritual groups have also taken up the cause.

(Source: Ganesh Chaturthi @ Wikipeida (English) – Status: 14:11, 22 August 2009)

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