Devotees deserted masks and social distancing was nowhere to be seen as individuals rubbed shoulders with one another to take the holy dip and provide prayers.
Magh Mela, the 47-day annual spiritual truthful started formally on Friday morning — the primary official bathing competition of Makar Sankranti on the banks of Sangam.
Pilgrims, saints and seers started to reach for the event in giant numbers on the eve of Makar Sankranti from Thursday and the fear of the third Corona wave was nowhere to be seen.
Officials had a tricky time in controlling crowds and making certain implementation of Covid protocols.
Mela official Shesh Mani Pandey mentioned that efforts have been constantly being made to forestall crowding both within the rivers or on the banks.
“Ten main bathing ghats have been set up for the pilgrims this time around. These would be stretching from Nagvasuki to Quila Ghat near Sangam in order to divert devotees to avoid overcrowding at one place,” he mentioned.
Officials anticipate round 5 lakh pilgrims to take the holy dip on Friday.
There are 13 police stations and 38 police outposts in varied sectors of the mela space. Apart from these, there are 13 fireplace stations and the complete mela space is being watched from 13 watch towers. CCTV cameras have been put in in these towers.
Entry of heavy autos has been restricted for January 14-15. Besides, entry of two and 4 wheelers will even be restricted contained in the mela space on the most important bathing days.
However, the elevated degree of water in river Ganga is one space of concern for the authorities. The degree of water, which used to stay round 74-75 meters, is 77 meters this yr round due to which the sturdy currents are eroding its financial institution at few factors, even as authorities are doing their finest in checking it.