Record prices have done little to dim the popularity of silver and gold offerings to Ganesha, the fulfiller of wishes without whose invocation nary a venture is launched.
Last Friday, a prominent resident of Veera Desai Road chose quiet anonymity even as his spectacular offering of a 16-kg silver 'chhatra' (umbrella) was unveiled at the Andhericha Raja Ganpati at Azad Nagar.
A leading developer in the western suburbs, the man had prayed for an FSI of 2.4 for a Mhada redevelopment project, a wish that came true. "I had made a pledge and I had to redeem it," he told TOI later. "Costs don't matter. After all, it is He who gives."
The richest Ganesh mandals in the city confirm that despite a giddy spiral in bullion prices, offerings of gold and silver continue to break previous records. "We have never needed to purchase golden or silver ornaments and embellishments for our Ganpati," says Uday Salian of Andhericha Raja. "From necklaces and earrings to garlands, models of houses, babies and body parts, our god receives a cache of offerings in precious metal."
The post-event auction of offerings sees unnamed faces — traders and small businessmen from every corner of Maharashtra-vie for souvenirs costing a few thousands or lakhs.