It is ironic when we say that “Mumbai is city of dreams” and yet “Mumbai never sleeps.” But as a Mumbaikar I know that both these statements are true and both these statements when dissolve in each other it brings for us, Mumbaikars, an awakening! This is a spiritual awakening we all wait for for an entire year, the arrival of our beloved deity, Ganesha. I happened to watch History TV 18’s documentary, Mumbai: City Of Ganesha and I got so involved in it that by the end of the documentary I had tears in my eyes.
This isn’t the first time I am reviewing a documentary so you can be assured that this is an unbiased review.
Mumbai: City Of Ganesha by History TV 18 is one documentary which is packed with a punch. If you are a Mumbaikar you know the feeling of Ganpati festival. It isn’t just a religious festival but it is a social gathering. Started with the aim to promote unity among the masses. It was Lokamanya Tilak’s tool to against the divide and rule policy of the government. I can say this, stress on it because I know for a fact that, people in Mumbai celebrate Ganpati irrespective of their religion. I remember this one time when I was interning with ANI (Asian News International) and was roaming in Bhindi Bazar to get hold of a Muslim person who was the whole and sole of a particular Ganpati Pandal. The person met us after we searched every bylane of the Bazar and what he said just blew my mind. He maintained that his feelings strongly resonate when it is Ganpati. To hear this was okay but to hear this, record it for an international news agency, a thought coming from a Muslim person was surprisingly special for me.
Yet another is an incident when a woman who I met at Dadar choupati on Gauri – Ganpati visarjan. I asked the lady, what is she feeling right now saying goodbye to her favorite deity. The next thing I know she was crying. That’s the spirit of this festival.
Coming to the technical aspects of this documentary. I truly loved the script of this documentary. Anshumali Jha, take a bow, that script gave me goosebumps and left me teary eyed. But had it not been for Bajrang Singh’s VO those emotions wouldn’t have been possible. The documentary is well researched and a great job done by Meera Rizvi and Nidhi Gupta in research department. I, being an ardent bappa bhakta, didn’t know that Siddhivinayak Mandir was a “smart temple” of our “smartphone generation.” As also the temple’s social initiative was yet unknown. I don’t know how much is the stock footage and how much has been filmed but again the camera team has done such a brilliant job! Even the edits have been done with precision. The visionary behind putting together this documentary on the canvas as in the director of this documentary is Avinash Kumar Singh.
The entire team deserves an applause.
You won’t understand what this festival means to a Mumbaikar unless you watch this documentary or become a part of this festival.
You can watch the documentary here:
PS: I strongly support eco – friendly Ganpati and I will never support playing cheap Bollywood item numbers on a Banjo or DJ during Ganpati.