Duration: 22 mins
Language: Hindi & Marathi
The area of Lalbaug lies in the heart of Girangaon, the erstwhile mill district of Bombay. The Lalbaugcha Raja (King of Lalbaug) is perhaps the most iconic Ganesh idol in a city that has adopted Ganesh as its deity like none other. More than thirty million people visit the site to seek its blessings within the ten day period of the festival. What is it that has made the place so popular, almost a pilgrimage spot in the heart of a teeming megalopolis? Is it sheer providence or something more human in its construction? If the latter, then who are the people behind it? Is it a coincidence that the Raja’s meteoric rise to prominence over the last decade overlaps with some of the biggest ruptures in the demographics of the city, its financial cartography and its ways of living? Is this newfound frenzy of reverence part of a prophesied latter-day revelation? Or is it a concerted effort to elide an unquiet past using the twin opiates of the masses: religion and the media? ‘Rajacha Lalbaug’ is an attempt at answering some of these questions.