Prayagraj: The auspicious festival of Makar Sankranti is here and will be celebrated on January 14. On Makar Sankranti, several fairs are organised across the country including the ‘Magh Mela’, which is one of the world’s biggest religious congregations that takes place at the ‘Sangam’ in Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj.
However, things will be different this year from previous occasions due to the COVID-19 outbreak. This time, the organising authorities have taken several steps to protect the devotees from catching the virus. They have made proper arrangements so that people can follow the necessary COVID-19 safety protocols.
Due to the ongoing crisis, the Magh Mela has been set up in five sectors in an area of 640 hectares. 16 entry points have been made along with the deployment of police personnel.
The expansion of bathing ghats has also been done so that devotees follow social distancing and other safety norms.
The fair will have over 100 CCTV cameras and 13 police stations along with 38 police posts and 13 fire stations.
This time, police personnel will have additional responsibilities like to keep a check if the devotees and tourists are wearing facemasks and if they are following COVID-19 norms or not.
For security, several teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF), Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS), Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) and Special Task Force (STF) have also been deployed. Teams of Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Local Intelligence Unit (LIU) will also be present during the month-long fair.