10 million to gather for 2015 Nashik Kumbh Mela

Mumbai, Oct 18 (IANS) The Maharashtra government is gearing up to receive over 10 million pilgrims for the 2015 Kumbh Mela, scheduled after 12 years in the small temple towns of Nashik-Trimbakeshwar, around 175 km north of Mumbai.

Preparations are in full swing to provide all type of infrastructure and amenities -- lodging and boarding, public toilets, water supply and sewage disposal, roads, bridges and transportation, and smooth arrangements for the Shahi Snaan -- for pilgrims, expected to gather from across the world.

"We have finalised a budget of Rs.2,380 crore for all the arrangements at the Kumbh Mela, including creating a 'Sadhugram' for the stay of around 200,000 holy men who will arrive," Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan said.

Chavan said this Saturday he would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi seeking maximum possible financial support for the pilgrims' congregation. Later, he will lead a delegation to Manmohan Singh and finalise all arrangements.

The Kumbh Mela is scheduled between July 14-Sep 25, 2015, with the Shahi Snaan on Aug 29, Sep 13 and Sep 25.

Nashik-Trimbakeshwar is among the four places in India -- along with Ujjain, Allahabad and Haridwar -- where the Kumbh Mela is held every 12 years.

During the last Kumbh Mela in Nashik-Trimbakeshwar in 2003, around six million people from all over the world took part. However, the pilgrims' Mela was marred by a stampede, in which 29 people were killed on a road leading to Ram Kund on the Godavari river.

While the Nashik Municipal Corporation makes preparations for the mega-pilgrimage, other departments of the state government are also making hectic arrangements for events on the sideline of the mela.

"Usually, lakhs of pilgrims who come for the Kumbh Mela also visit nearby places like Shirdi, Shani-Shingnapur, Bhimashankar and other locations. We are making full arrangements to cater to the additional burden expected on these places, besides tight security," state Home Minister R.R. Patil said.

Tourism and Public Works Department Minister Chhagan Bhujbal said all the infrastructure works taken up in Nashik and surrounding areas would be completed well in time for the Kumbh Mela.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

As two of the most glamorous sides in the Indian T20 league, the focus of the match between Mumbai and Bangalore will invariably be on the middle-order… More »

BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srinivasan, says Manohar

BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srinivasan, says Manohar

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Pietersen ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Pietersen ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Beleaguered Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Beleaguered Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »

Stressed Trott stands down again

Stressed Trott stands down again

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Friday confirmed that batsman Jonathan Trott is to take another break from all cricket with immediate eff… More »

PCB starts another coach hunt

PCB starts another coach hunt

The PCB has decided to not extend the contracts of head coach Moin Khan, fielding coach Shoaib Mohammad and batting consultant Zaheer Abbas, and has invited… More »

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistani cricket authorities have launched an investigation after a number of current international stars played in exhibition matches in the United States… More »

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

England all-rounder Ben Stokes admits he must keep his anger under control if he is to end his international exile. More »

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Yuvraj Singh was back to his best in his first match for Royal Challengers Bangalore. More »

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

The BCCI will hold an emergent working committee meeting on April 20 to discuss the future course of action with regard to the Supreme Court hearing concerning… More »

Gavaskar wants a clean IPL

Gavaskar wants a clean IPL

"Integrity is non-negotiable..." says the BCCI's interim chief ahead of Season 7 of the tainted league. More »

Time for Chennai to enter familiar cocoon

Time for Chennai to enter familiar cocoon

Chennai have an emphatic 8-3 lead in the head-to-head with Punjab, with one game tied More »

Kallis, Narine star in KKR win

Kallis, Narine star in KKR win

An all-round display saw Knight Riders thump Mumbai Indians by 41 runs in the IPL-7 opener. More »

'Yak' Kallis still on top of his game

'Yak' Kallis still on top of his game

The 38-year-old South African veteran turned it on for Kolkata Knight RIders in the opening match of IPL-7. More »

Rajasthan and Hyderabad face-off

Rajasthan and Hyderabad face-off

A quality that defines Rajasthan and Hyderabad is consistency. Rajasthan was one among two teams to enjoy complete dominance at home last season. Hyderabad… More »

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

Srinivasan named in fixing report: SC

The court emphasised that the tainted administrator can no longer work for the BCCI. More »

Yuvraj happy to play for RCB: Kohli

Yuvraj happy to play for RCB: Kohli

New-look RCB will play their first game of IPL-7 on Thursday. More »

IPL: News Line

IPL: News Line

A round-up of all the news from this season of the IPL. More »

Shane Watson issues moral warning

Shane Watson issues moral warning

'Everyone knows what is right and what is wrong and if you do the wrong thing it will be found out' More »

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Why I'm not looking forward to the IPL

Welcome to another season of a league that many watch but few trust. More »

Johnson may quit T20s for Tests

Johnson may quit T20s for Tests

Australia's Mitchell Johnson may quit limited-overs cricket to prolong his test career with an eye on the 2015 Ashes series in England, the fast bowler… More »

Nepal players call off boycott

Nepal players call off boycott

Thaw in relations after formation of an advisory committee that would work in tandem with the Cricket Association of Nepal. More »