Pilgrims who set out from the city to reach Sagar Island to take a holy dip in the confluence of river Ganga expressed their satisfaction with the arrangement made by the state government to help them reach the place without facing any inconvenience.
The state government made an elaborate arrangement to help the pilgrims reach their destination and return safely without facing any trouble. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee held a review meeting on January 5 over the preparation for Ganga Sagar Mela where more than 14 lakh pilgrims visit every year.
Subrata Mukehrjee, the state PHE minister, and Sobhandeb Chatterjee, the state Power minister, had visited the Sagar Island to take a stock of the preparation of the mela.
The pilgrims were found leaving for Lot 8 transit point from where they will cross Muri Ganga in vessels to reach Kachuberia transit point in Sagar Island. From Kachuberia they will be taking a bus to reach the Kapil Muni’s Temple that has been decorated with lights.
The state PHE department is the nodal agency to organise the mela, but many departments had worked together to ensure that pilgrims could safely reach the venue.
The Transport department had ensured additional bus services both in the mainland and the island. There are more buses this time to take people from the transit points in Sagar Island to the mela ground.
Similarly, there will be around 20 more vessels to ensure that people do not face trouble in reaching the island by crossing Muri Ganga river from the mainland. There will be a total of 90 vessels.
Thousands of civil volunteers, all local youth, have been deployed in the mela to keep the area clean. They will ask people to avoid open defecation. Their main task would be to keep the mela premises clean.
Steps have also been taken to ensure uninterrupted power supply in the mela premises. There will be huge generators as source for alternate power supply. Since lakhs of pilgrims will be present at the mela premises at a time, the arrangement of alternate power supply has been made.
This time, around 6,000 civil volunteers, all local youth, will be deployed in the mela to keep the area clean. They will restrict people from going for open defecation. At the same time, the volunteers will also restrict pilgrims from dumping unused materials wherever they like. They will direct them to use the dustbins which will be placed at the gap of every three tents.
With a target to keep the mela ground clean and green, around 15,000 sanitary toilets will be set up. Last year around 10,000 sanitary toilets were set up.