Madhur Bhandarkar: I religiously visit Laalbaugcha Raja every year
In a conversation with Hindustan Times, filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar reveals Ganesh Chaturthi 2022 puja plans at his home with friends and family.
Madhur Bhandarkar has brought home Ganpati Bappa and like every year, it’s going to be an intimate celebration with family members, friends and well-wishers. Talking about his love for Ganeshotsav, the filmmaker who is known as an ardent follower of Lord Ganesha, revealed to Hindustan Times, “We celebrate it like everyone else, with lots of love and Maharashtrian food. There’s Ganpati aarti as well and everything is eco-friendly.”
“See, for the last two years it was very mellow because of covid. There were a lot of restrictions on everyone. This year will be more fun-filled with close people,” Madhur shared his excitement.
The season brings a lot of memories from childhood days. He recalled one of many, “As kids, we used to have lots of sweets when relatives would come and visit us. But now I can’t do the same, because I also have to take care of my diet. During childhood, it was a different kind of fun. My cousins from all over the city used to come to our house and stay with us. Now the time has changed completely. Earlier it used to be a celebration of three days, but now it’s only one. Now everybody has grown up and is busy. Now they have kids and they are more into gadgets and Instagram. Our times were different, we didn’t have many things except television, so we used to play games and even listen to Hindi songs on those old tape cassettes.”
What is the one religious place or temple the filmmaker visits each year? He told us, “Yeah, I always visit Lalbaugcha Raja.” Andheri-based Lalbaugcha Raja is among the biggest and most popular pandals in Mumbai.
While the Andhericha Raja pandal never fails to bring out the festival’s true colours, it has remained in debate ever since the pandal committee—Lalbaugcha Raja Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Mandal requested visitors to wear traditional clothes while visiting the pandal last 12 years. When asked about his thoughts on the dress code, Madhur Bhandarkar said, “I think obviously the committee has taken the decision, we should respect that. I have no clue about it. If they have requested then I think we should respect the decorum of the committee. It’s their decision.”