Aizawl, the 12th October 2021 : Co-ordination Committee on Idol Immersion, Mizoram under Mizoram Pollution Control Board has issued the following Public Advisory for Environmentally Safe Idol Immersion in line with the laid down directives in this matter by the Central Pollution Control Board to be adhered to by local Puja Committees in Mizoram.
Immersion of idols on festive occasions such as, Ganesh Chathurthi, Durga Pooja and Sarswati Pooja are known to cause extensive pollution of water bodies. The idols are commonly made of Plaster of Paris (POP) with plastic and thermocol accessories, adorned with toxic paints and heavy decorations. Such materials are non-biodegradable and are toxic when immersed in water bodies. Hence, Central Pollution Control Board developed “Guidelines for Idol Immersion” to ensure environmental friendly idol immersion without affecting the quality of water bodies while ensuring religious observance.
It is requested that following points be kept in mind and followed for ensuring environmentally safe idol immersion:
1. Only eco-Friendly idols should be used for offering Poojas which are made with natural, bio-degradable and organic material like clay, sand, newspaper, sugarcane, natural dye and dried flowers etc., free from Plaster of Paris (POP), plastic, thermocol and other toxic, inorganic raw materials.
2. Bio-degradable paper plates/cups and earthen pots should be used in place of single use plastic and polystyrene (Thermocol) for Prasad distribution and other purposes.
3. Worship materials like flowers, leaves, clothes and decorating materials should be removed before immersion of Idols and segregated in colour coded bins.
4. Pooja Organizing Committees should procure eco-friendly idols only from registered/authorized manufacturers and should seek prior permission from concerned ULB providing management plan for idol immersion at least one month in advance for making necessary arrangements in consultation with the concerned departments.
5. Instead of immersion of idols in natural water bodies, temporary idol immersion Ponds/Tanks should be arranged at suitable locations in close vicinity of the public or on the banks of rivers, ponds or lakes with necessary provisions for collection and storage of segregated wastes prior to immersion.
6. Immersion of small idols at household level should be done in eco-friendly manner that is, using only eco-friendly idols immersed in a bucket filled with water or in a designated on-land temporary artificial pond or tank located nearby.
7. All the collected and segregated materials should be transported and disposed of periodically or within 24 hours of competition of idol immersion in accordance with Solid Waste management Rules,2016. Littering or burning of wastes generated at the immersion sites or on the banks of the rivers should be prohibited.