An estimated 60 lakh pilgrims took holy dip in the Ganga on Somvati Amavasya on Monday, claim the officials. The arrival of devotees had begun on Sunday, a day ahead of Somvati Amavasya snan.A long weekend and the auspicious occasion beckoned tourists from Delhi NCR region, Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan.
Temporary bus stands set up at Rishikul witnessed heavy rush of pilgrims. Movement of heavy vehicles was stopped from Sunday midnight to Monday midnight. The hill pass road and Chilla road were opened to ease the traffic flow in the city area.
The period of merit on Somvati Amavasya started on Monday morning and lasted till late evening. Pilgrims from all parts of the country thronged the Ganga river here to gain the merit of having snan on Somvati Amavasya. The people performed tarpan (offering to the ancestors) at Narayani Shila and Kushawart Ghat.It is believed that whatever one offers on this day to the deceased family members, reaches them and one earns merit by taking holy dip. The merit gained is even more than performing ‘Ashwamedh yajna’.
The district’s senior superintendent of police (SSP) Janmejay Khanduri along with his team monitored the movements from CCR Tower at Har Ki Paidi while the district magistrate Deepak Rawat inspected the area in the morning hours.Speaking to The Pioneer, the SSP Janmejay Khanduri said, “There was no chock-o-block situation on the highway or other roads connecting to Har Ki Paidi. In Roorkee there was traffic jam for a few minutes but was resolved soon. Till 4 PM 55 lakh pilgrims had taken the dip at Har Ki Paidi and other Ganga Ghats and after evening Arti the number crossed 60 lakh. The highway was not closed at any point of time. Four wheelers were allowed beyond Rishikul in the afternoon till the railway station.” Discussing about the traffic arrangements, the SSP added, “The whole of mela zone had been divided into zones and sectors. Police personnel were positioned across the highway and the major crossings to ensure people do not stand midway creating traffic chaos.
While diverting the traffic from Laksar region, the pace was slowed down but nowhere was traffic jam reported. Traffic was diverted from Narsen entry point and inside city through Chilla route, buses were diverted. ” Zero zone was marked from post office tri-junction to the main market of Har Ki Paidi and towards Bhim Goda area. Two teams of bomb disposal squad and dog squad were deputed in the mela zone and the whole area was under the surveillance through close circuit television cameras, added the SSP.
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