Garbis are earthen pots with lamps worshipped during Navrati to symbolize the source of life and true to its meaning, the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC), in a small but significant step has mooted a first of its kind initiative to utilize these earthen pots in a graceful, eco friendly and above all productive manner.
In view of the Covid-19 pandemic, the MBMC had issued a circular stating devotees won’t be able to immerse the idols on their own. Instead, the civic administration had tagged six collection centers at strategic locations across the twin-city, where devotees could handover the idol of the goddess floral offering (Nirmalya) remains and the earthen pot called “garbi”- which is worshipped by placing an oil lamp and the flame is kept burning non-stop for the nine days of the festival.
While the idols were immersed in the ponds, the floral remains will be converted into green manure by treating it in special vermicomposting pits and the earthen pots will be used to grow tulsi (holy basil) plants. “We will use our in-house manure to fill the pots and grow various plants like tulsi. The decorative and colourful pots will add to the beauty of municipal gardens,” said deputy municipal commissioner- Dr. Sambhajji Panpatte.
The MBMC produced around 1.5 tonnes of compost per month from an average of 50 kg Nirmalaya it received every day, before the imposition of pandemic-induced lockdown in March, this year. While the bulk of the generated manure was used as a fertilizer in the municipal gardens, the civic administration was mooting on a project to use the organic manure to grow a variety of vegetables.
Notably, the MBMC had bagged the prestigious Skoch, Order-of -Merit Award for successfully implementing green manure conversion by optimizing floral offerings, last year.