The immersion of thousands of idols of the elephant-headed Lord Ganesha ended in most parts of Maharashtra on a tragic note with at least 16 visarjan-related deaths in the 24 hours to Friday morning, officials said. Two people are missing.
At least seven deaths took place in Nashik during immersion ceremonies in the district lashed by rains since Thursday.
An army soldier, Sandeep Shirsat, and another local, S Rameshwar, drowned in a pond in Musalgaon, while Nilesh Patil, Bhushan Kasbe, Sumit Pawar, Amol Patil and Roshan Salve died in different villages in the district.
Three students drowned in a river while clicking selfies with idols of Lord Ganesh in Wardha district, and one of their friends was rescued from the swirling waters by locals.
A school teacher Parmeshwar Shengule from Waluj drowned during immersion ceremonies in Godavari river while a civic worker lost his life in Nanded.
Two youths were washed away in the Kaang river in Jalgaon. One body was found while another was missing.
Two youths are reported missing during an immersion ceremony in Pune, details of which are not available.
In Nagpur, a 27-year-old woman Manisha K. Masaram lost her life after she intervened in a brawl over preparing ‘prasad’ in the Hanuman Temple Ganeshotsav Mandal on Wednesday night.
Manisha’s brother Lokesh and another person Darshan were fighting when she attempted to stop them abd Darshan pushed her due to which she fell and lost her life.
On Tuesday, a five-year-old girl Priya S. Mahule fell into a boiling cauldron of ‘daal’ being prepared as part of ‘MahaPrasad’ during the ganeshotsav at Buddha Nagar in Pachpoli area of the city.
According to the police, Priya was playing near the pandal when she decided to take a peek into the unattended cauldron, suddenly slipped and fell into boiling ‘daal’ preparation.
The tragedy occurred during the evening aarti when everybody, including the cooks, were busy inside the pandal.
On hearing her screams, the devotees rushed out to see the girl struggling in the steaming ‘daal’, somehow fished her out and took her to a nearby hospital.
Priya, who sustained over 80 per cent burns, succumbed to her injuries on Wednesday morning.
Meanwhile, after more than 24 hours, the immersion ceremonies of thousands of big and small idols of Lord Ganesha finally drew to an end on Friday morning across the state, marking the end of the 11-day Ganeshotsav.