#INDIA: Thousands of Naga sadhus and lakhs of pilgrims thronged Sangam Ghat for a holy dip in river Ganga on the occasion of the first ‘shahi snan’.
Drum beats and ‘Har Har Mahadev’ chants mark the beginning of the 49-day Grand Ardh-Kumbh Mela 2019.
Traditional akhadas, five-star tents, and high-tech lost-and-found centres have been set up along the river banks of Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj for the Kumbh Mela.
Security too has been beefed up and police are on high alert at the Kumbh Mela site.
More than 140 million pilgrims, tourists and representatives from 192 countries are expected to attend the mega event.
This year’s mela – the Ardh Kumbh Mela – being celebrated after six years, has over 1.22 lakh toilets, 250 km of new roads, 22 pontoon bridges and over 40,000 LED lights. The Ganga Pandal set up at the venue has a capacity of 10,000 people. A tent city consisting of more than 2,000 tents has been set up.