In Balapur, a city on the outskirts of Telangana, laddus at Ganesha Chaturthi invoke a feeling of proud amongst the locals. Because not only this city on Maharashtra’s outskirts has the record for making huge laddus every year for auction but also the amount its bid for.
This is a tradition that the city has become synonymous with. It was first started in 1994 with the winning amount being Rs 450 only to multiply manifolds over the years. However the ritual also says that the winning amount be paid next year.This year’s winning bid being a whooping Rs 14.65 lakh!
The Ganesh Utsav Samiti received the cheque from Skylab Reddy. The man with an interesting first name is a local politician aiming to contest elections in the next. He said he’ll break the tradition of submitting the money next year and paid the money on spot. He further said he will distribute the laddu in his village and among relatives.
And its not just this year but the tradition always jumps in lakhs as the bidders compete for amongst themselves. The bidding of the laddu prasadam is a ritual the locals gloat upon.
The last year’s bid that won the laddu at Balapur was for Rs 10.32 lakh. A local of Balapur, K Madanmohan Reddy had bought it but Skylab jumped the bridge by 4 lakh this year grabbing enough attention.
Similar bidding take place in various part of the country after the completion of Ganesha Chaturthi but seldom do they reach the amount managed by Balapur prasadam. The laddu, that’s decorated well with Ganesha incarnations is guarded around by Police officials till the winner takes it home.