Mamata urges Central govt to declare Gangasagar Mela a national-level fair

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GANGASAGAR: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday urged the Central government to declare Gangasagar Mela a national-level fair.

She said that a total of three helipads have been inaugurated in Gangasagar and as the journey is difficult, they are making Detail Project Report (DPR) for the bridge in Mourigram.

“Although Gangasagar’s journey is difficult, we are making DPR for the bridge in Mourigram as we are not getting any support from the Centre. The Centre supports Kumbh mela, but the Gangasagar does not get any,” Mamata Banerjee said underscoring the Kumbh Mela’s connectivity with Civil Aviation and the Railways.

Banerjee further said that this time, the fair will showcase Kali Temple, Dakhineshwar Temple, Tarapith Temple, and Johurakhali Temple.

Talking about the safety and security during the Gangasagar Mela, CM Banerjee said that they will provide Rs 5 lakh insurance if any untoward incident takes place between January 8 to 17, here.

Before addressing the media persons in South 24 Paraganas, West Bengal CM also offered prayers at Kapil Muni temple in Gangasagar and inaugurated three helipads here. These helipads will be made available for use by tourists during the Gangasagar fair in upcoming years.

The Gangasagar fair will take place from January 8 to 17 and the Sagar Aarti will go on for three days — from January 12 to 14.

The West Bengal government has ramped up arrangements for the Gangasagar Mela, next year. The fair ranks as one of the country’s top pilgrimage events.

However, with a new Covid strain unleashing global terror and also casting a long shadow on India, the district magistrate of South 24 Parganas, Sumit Gupta, said all precautions will be taken to prevent the spread of the virus during the annual pilgrimage fair.

During the annual festival on Sagar island, lakhs of people take a dip at the confluence of the Ganges and the Bay of Bengal on Makar Sankranti and offer prayers at the Kapil Muni temple.

On the security arrangements for the festival, the DM informed that multiple teams of NDRF and other personnel will be deployed for the fair.

“There will be one air ambulance and four water ambulances, in addition to around 100 ambulances at the fairground. As many as five NDRF teams, along with the teams from the Navy and the Coast Guard, will also be put on standby. We will also open a mega control room to monitor the security situation,” District Magistrate (DM) of South 24 Parganas, Sumit Gupta said. (ANI)

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