Mumbai/Srinagar, Sep 18 (IANS) Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde visited the Ganeshotsav Mandal in Lal Chowk where the local Marathi Sonar community has been celebrating the festival for the past 24 years, an official said here on Monday.
Shinde, who is on a two-day visit to Kashmir since Sunday, prayed to Lord Ganesha to remove all ‘vighnas’ (obstacles/hindrances) in Jammu & Kashmir and for prosperity to all.
Previously, the Marathi community in Srinagar used to celebrate Ganeshotsav festival at their homes, but for the past 24 years, they have had a public celebration at the Panchmukhi Hanuman Temple in Lal Chowk in which even the local Muslim communities participate in large numbers.
The visiting CM and Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha attended a progamme to felicitate 73 senior citizens through Sarhad, and unveil a 72-ft Tricolour for the Indian Army at Chhanigund, and release the Marathi translation of Gen. Ved Prakash Malik’s book, entitled ‘Kargil Ashcharyacha Dhakka Te Vijay’.
The CM revealed that during his previous visit to the region (June 2023), he had requested Lt. Governor Sinha for help to construct a ‘Maharashtra Bhavan’ in Srinagar.
“This time, the Lt. Governor has invited me for the foundation stone puja of the premises during the upcoming auspicious Navratri festival,” said a beaming Shinde, adding that the state will request for a similar Maharashtra Bhavan at the famed Tirupati Temple in Andhra Pradesh for the benefit of people from this state.
Pune-based NGO, ‘Sarhad’ Founder Sanjay Nahar said that the UT of Jammu & Kashmir will shortly allot the land for the proposed ‘Maharashtra Bhavan’ in Srinagar soon and the ground-breaking ceremony is planned during Navratri next month.
Earlier, Shinde attended a programme ‘Hum Sab Ek Hain’, ‘Sarhad’, flagging off the Kargil International Marathon, visit the Kargil WarM emorial in Drass, and interacted with the Army jawans to commemorate Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 73rd birthday on Sunday.