Huge turn up at Har Ki Pauri on Ardh Kumbh key bathing day
Lakhs of pilgrims took a holy dip in Ganga here on Thursday on the occasion of Chaitra Amawasya, the sixth key bathing day of Ardh Kumbh.
While the turnout was nowhere near the expected thirty lakh, officials said “good footfall” was witnessed throughout the day and all streets leading to Har Ki Pauri were crowded. The traffic restrictions were in place for major part of the day.
Many pilgrims expressed satisfaction with various facilities at the mela and with the security arrangement but some complained of insufficient water at the ghats. For the first time during the mela this year, pilgrims were allowed to take the direct route to Har Ki Pauri from the bus and railway station as there were no diversions.
Governor K K Paul’s advisers, Ravindra Singh and Prakash Mishra, had visited Haridwar on Wednesday to review the mela works and arrangements for the key bathing day.
Mela IG G S Martolia expressed satisfaction that the snan passed off peacefully and pilgrims seemed satisfied with the arrangements. “A greater turnout is expected on April 14 as it is the main bathing day of the Ardh Kumbh,” he said. A number of buses and trains are being run for the convenience of pilgrims.
The movement of pilgrims around the mela area was also smooth because the administration had removed encroachments in Har Ki Pauri, Moti Bazar, Pantdweep, Rori Belwala and Sukhi Nadi during an anti-encroachment drive a few days ago.