Hyderabad, Sep 2 Ganesh immersion procession passed off peacefully in Hyderabad on Tuesday amid tight security and low-key festivities due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Hundreds of devotees gathered at Hussain Sagar lake in the heart of the city for immersion of idols, marking the culmination of the nine-day festival.
About 5,000 idols were immersed in the lake and the process was on till midnight. However, the number of idols decreased compared to the previous years due to Covid.
The grand immersion procession began from Balapur with several idols carried on trucks.
The famous Khairatabad Ganesh was also brought to the lake in a procession. The size of the idol this year was reduced to just nine feet. It used to be the tallest idol in the city.
The organisers said this was the first time in the last 66 years that the size was reduced. Every year, the organisers used to increase its height by one foot and this year, they had planned to install a 66-feet idol.
In view of the pandemic, the organisers of the festival did not organize traditional auctions of 'laddus' and 'prasadam' distribution programmes.
Authorities made elaborate arrangements for smooth conduct of the immersion. Nearly 15,000 personnel were deployed as part of the massive security.
A total of 21 cranes were deployed around Hussain Sagar for immersion of the idols brought from various parts of the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad and the outskirts.
Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar, who monitored the security arrangements, visited the lake along with other police officials. They observed the immersion from a boat on the lake.
The police chief said the immersion was continuing in a serene atmosphere, and Covid-19 rules were being followed. He said the number of idols decreased this year.
( With inputs from IANS )
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