Maharashtra govt to give Rs 10 lakh cover to all govindas, says CM Eknath Shinde | Mumbai News – Times of India


Maharashtra CM Ekanth Shinde (File photo)

MUMBAI: The Eknath Shinde-led government, which has allowed dahi handi celebrations to be held after a gap of two years, on Tuesday announced a Rs 10 lakh insurance for all govindas in the state. CM Shinde said the premium will be paid by the government and this is being done to ensure all govindas are safe and can get compensation in case of mishap.
“We have ensured that all the rules related to safety will be followed. Since there was a demand from mandals for an insurance scheme to provide a safety net, the government has taken this decision,” he said. The Bombay HC has already mandated RS 10 lakh insurance for each govinda.
Mandals too buy insurance for their govindas
While the Shinde government has announced insurance for govindas, in any case, with Gokulashtami coming up on August 19 (Friday), dahi handi teams are making sure to purchase insurance for their players who will head out to break the pot. The HC had mandated that each govinda be insured for a sum of Rs 10 lakh.
Contrary to perception, it is not boys who tumble from the top of the pyramid that are the worst sufferers. It is the youth on lower layers who cushion their fall that are more vulnerable to breaking bones.
Public sector firm Oriental Insurance is the major insurer for dahi handi mandals. “It offers a comprehensive cover of Rs 10 lakh to each govinda for an affordable premium of Rs 75. This is less than the cost of a T-shirt and covers practice sessions as well as performance. We tell our boys to forego petty expenses on caps and tees and buy insurance instead,” said Arun Patil, working president of Dahi Handi Samanvay Samiti.
Sachin Khanvilkar of Oriental’s MCDO-1 (Mumbai City Divisional Office), is the liaison person for all dahi handi mandals. He said, “Our policy covers the player for a month and a half, from the time practice starts at Guru Purnima, until 6 am on the morning after Gokulashtami. Through these 45 days, the govinda receives full personal accident cover, not only during practice or performance but also road accident, electric shock and terror attack.”
On Gokulashtami in 2017, a 20-year-old govinda from Khetwadi, Chirag Panchal, was headed to a match when he fell off his bike near Chunabhatti and fractured his femur bone. “I was in Sion Hospital for 8-9 days but laid up in bed for 6 months afterwards. My team had insured me so my treatment expenses of Rs 80,000 were covered,” he said. Bala Padelkar, DHSS president, said policy sum and duration of cover was higher — and premium amount lower — since 2003-4, thanks to the Samiti’s mediation.


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