Wednesday, September 30, 2015

My Tryst With Lord Ganesha At Girgaum Chowpatty

It was Mr Shreekanth Malushte one of my Gurus of Photography who first introduced me to Lord Ganesha at the Ganesh Gully Workshops ,, I began shooting the Lord on slide and BW and color roll ,,

After that I visited Ganesha Pandals shot Lord Ganesha on his throne ,, Visarjan time Mr Shreekanth Malushte bought us to his ancestral home at Girgaum and after a hearty Marath meal along with his son Himanshu Malushte bought us on the roads near Opera House to shoot the Ganeshas coming for immersion..and I only shot from the roads standing on the drums used as barriers by the Traffic Police and after shooting on film I would vend my home and it was here near Grant Road I met the Hijras with their Ganesha from Kamathipura , they were with their toyboys , some were drunk and I shot a lot of pictures now closed to public view .
And I also visited Heena  a Hijra Queen of the Redlight Area at Pila House during the Ganesha festival and her guru was a Hindu Lakshmi not the celebrity .. I presented their Lord Ganesha a huge chunky Australian Quartz..

So I continued shooting Lord Ganesha year after year from the roads , there was an incident of the cops catching me shooting on the beach so I never ever shot or went near the Beach.

And than years later I was introduced to Lalbagh Chya Raja and I completely stopped going to Girgaum Chowpatty on the main visarjan day ,, for years I followed Lalbagh Chya Raja from Lalbagh till Do Tanki where the Muslims felicitate the Raja .

Than a few year back guys ripped open my satchel and robbed my money my cards even the cards on which I had shot the morning Arti at Lalbagh Chya Raja Pandal ,, and I stopped following the Raja last two or three years I shoot the Pandal the Arti and return home ,, also I walk barefeet and a leg injury made me stop the grueling walk..

This year after the Arti I would have returned home but thanks to my friend Vinay Parelkar a great innovative photographer , I came to Girgaum Chowpatty , caught up with him there and shot on the beach and in the waters ,, when the light began to fade I decided to return home ,,I did not want to shoot with flash or on a higher ISO./.

So in a way it was Lord Ganesha son of Shiva and Parvati who pushed me deep into the fathomless abyss of the camera ,, I have yet no surfaced ,, and the Cosmic Eye of Shiva does not let me drown fully.