Gangasagar M¤ West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday underlined the need to maintain strictly the covid protocol to successful the annual pilgrimage of gangasagar mela.
Banerjee arrived to this small island, one of the holiest sites in India and seat of Kapil Muni Ashram, to oversee the preparations for safe passage and stay for pilgrims.
She said every year some 20/30 lakh devotees come here for pilgrimage during pous sankranti.
The government was making every effort for comfortable sojourn of the devotees who come from
all over the country.
She said the government was spending huge money every year for maintenance and upkeep of the infrastructure, which also destroyed due to natural calamity.
The chief minister said despite the gangasagar mela is famous for the devotees the Union Government was not bothered to support financially.
She also offered puja and prayer at the Kapil Muni temple and then visited Bharat Sevasram.
The chief minister is scheduled to stay next two days to review the arrangements with the stakeholders.
Banerjee on Monday directed the administration to take all possible steps for making the
upcoming Gangasagar Mela (Fair) eco-friendly and plastic-free.
The chief minister, who presided over an administrative meeting on the preparations for the
annual fair at State Secretariat Nabanna, said the event next mnth would be organised following
all the guidelines issued by the government regarding the corona epidemic.
She said four Covid hospitals have been opened in Gangasagar – an island at the confluence of the Ganges and the Bay of Bengal in the South 24 Parganas district – considered auspicious by the Hindus.
Five safe homes and 11 quarantine centres would be set up, with arrangements for RTPCR tests at 13 points. Masks and sanitisers will be distributed among the pilgrims, for whom life insurance of Rs 5 lakh would also be arranged.
The chief minister said that arrangements will be made for 2,250 government and 500 private buses, while100 vessels will ply in the waters.
She said twenty drones will keep watch from the sky, and closed circuit TV cameras installed at all
the vantage points in Gangasagar.
Ten temporary fire service stations are being opened, while the administration would arrange 10,000 toilets for the pilgrims.
The Railways would run 70 additional trains for six days during the fair. For the convenience of the pilgrims, special emphasis will be laid on putting up more banners and hoardings in Hindi.
The chief minister said dredging work has been largely completed. The vessels will be able to ply in Muri Ganga river for 20-22 hours.