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Noted singer Sonu Nigam on Sunday reacted to the Kumbh Mela being made symbolic for this year due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The singer feels the religious gathering shouldn’t have been permitted to happen amid the pandemic.
With reports of a huge number of Covid positive cases from the Kumbh Mela area in Haridwar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday appealed to observe the event “symbolic” to strengthen the fight against the deadly virus. Sonu Nigam posted a video on Instagram on Sunday reacting to the same.
In his Instagram video, Sonu Nigam said in Hindi: “I can’t comment about anything else, I’m born a Hindu and as a Hindu, I feel the Kumbh Mela shouldn’t have taken place in the first place. Thank God good sense prevailed on everyone and it has been made symbolic. I understand it is a matter of faith but considering the present situation of the world, nothing can be more important than the lives of people.”
The singer in his video also expressed that live shows should not be arranged amid the second wave of the pandemic which has badly affected India. He said: “As a singer, I feel live shows should not be conducted right now. Shows can be done by maintaining social distance and taking precautions but not now, at a later time. We have to be very careful, the situation is very bad.”
Further in his video, the singer informed that he will return to Mumbai from Goa on Monday and isolate himself as a precautionary measure. He said: “I’ll return to Mumbai from Goa tomorrow and isolate myself in my room for a couple of days because I have to meet my father. Once I feel it is right, then I’ll go and meet my father.” (IANS/JC)
Union Minister of Earth Sciences and Environment Harsh Vardhan on Monday launched special weather services for people visiting Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj during Kumbh Mela between January and March.
Speaking at the launch here, the Minister said the government had installed four Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) at four locations in Prayagraj and one mobile AWS to provide information of the prevailing weather in real-time and forecast weather three days in advance.
“The real-time location-specific weather information will not only be very helpful for the local and state authorities in the efficient management of the entire event but also benefit the pilgrims by keeping them abreast of the latest weather information,” he said.
Besides, a mobile application named “Kumbh Mela Weather Service” was also launched by the Minister.
The app would disseminate live weather information like temperature, humidity, rainfall and winds as observed in the locations where AWS would be installed.
“The app will also provide weather forecast and warnings if any for Prayagraj three days in advance. The mobile app will be available for download from Google Store,” a release said.
For the AWSes, Allahabad University, Delhi Public School, G.B. Pant Institute of Social Science and Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences have been selected to observe real-time weather. (IANS)
Kumbh Mela is set to begin in Prayagraj (formerly Allahabad) from January 15, officials said here on Monday. It hosted over 12 crore holy men, ascetics and pilgrims in 2013 in the same place.
The Mela, inscribed in the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2017, is the biggest “peaceful congregation of pilgrims on earth”, as per UNESCO.
Celebrated for mythological reasons, the grand event is held in Haridwar, Ujjain and Nasik, apart from Prayagraj.
For the 2019 edition, the Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government has earmarked an amount of Rs 2,800 crore, State Minister for Sugarcane Development, Sugar Mills and Industrial Development Suresh Rana told reporters here.
The Mela will be organised in an area of 3,200 hectares, double the area of the last Kumbh, said Awanish Kumar Awasthi, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary, Information, Tourism and Religious Affairs, Uttar Pradesh government.
He added that the Hindu holy city, located at the Triveni Sangam (merging of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers), was undergoing an extensive makeover to welcome crores of pilgrims from across the world.
Works of stable development or permanent infrastructural works “are being carried out at Kumbh Mela and Prayagraj with a total amount of Rs 4,300 crore”, he added. This is much more than the Rs 1,214 crore spent on the 2013 Kumbh.
The project undertaken focussed on works of infrastructural facilities like roads, bridges, drinking water schemes, electricity and tourism related.
Over 1.22 lakh toilets have been constructed for this year’s Kumbh, 20 thousand dustbins set up, and 42 drains emptying into the Ganga have been taped, officials said.
The city spaces has also been painted with colourful art works.
The grand festival with a history dating back to at least 1,500 years will begin on January 15 with the first holy bath, followed by several others till March 4. It will host over 5,000 camps from multiple akhadas and ashrams.
Representatives from 192 countries will visit the festival in February, officials said, adding that ambassadors of 71 countries had already witnessed the preparations for the event.
The officials also said that actor Amitabh Bachchan, who was born in Allahabad, has been roped in for four films, which are expected to be screened in the festival.
Rana added that the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister was personally extending invitations to Governors, Chief Ministers, dignitaries and functionaries besides spiritual leaders of other Indian states.
Visitors to the Kumbh Mela can find stay and travel related information online on www.kumbh.gov.in, and can stay in tents mounted for the festival, which can be booked online. (IANS)
Reliance Jio on Monday said that its JioPhone will provide information services about the upcoming Kumbh Mela such as event schedules at the mega religious congregation.
According to Reliance Jio, under the services, JioPhone users would get information of the whole event, travel information of special trains and buses, and route maps, among others.
“The Kumbh JioPhone along with the power of Jio 4G data will ensure that the Kumbh pilgrims can make the most of their pilgrimage,” the company said in a statement on Monday.