The fifth bathing festival or Shahi Snan of Maghi Purnima at Prayagraj Kumbh Mela will take place on Tuesday. A large number of devotees and tourists are continuously reaching the Sangam, the confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and mythical river Saraswati for taking ‘holy bath’ on the occasion. The Prayagraj Mela Authority has imposed a number of traffic restrictions in the district in view of heavy rush of pilgrims. Entry of heavy vehicles has been restricted into the district and all types of vehicles including pass holders are banned to enter into the Mela area. Only vehicles related to essential services, media and administration are allowed.
With the bathing of Maghi Purnima, Kalpvasees will return to their home. They will be second largest contingent of the Kumbh who leaves the Mela prior to Mahashivratri Shahi Snan (royal bath) festival. Mela administration has developed eight kilometer long 40 bathing ghats for devotees. The administration has elaborated the security arrangements in the mela area. Additional central para military forces are deployed in view of huge rush on the occasion. Two bridges on the rivers of Ganga and Yamuna are closed for traffic and only old bridge on Yamuna is open for traffic. Additional watch towers have been erected with public address system to regulate the rush of devotees. Mela administration has said that photography will not be allowed within the 100 feet proximity of bathing ghats as per order of Allahabad High court. The court has also directed that photos of bathing women will not be allowed to be published. Educational institutions including higher education at Prayagraj have been closed for three days from Monday.
Mela administration has also deployed magistrates and police officers at sensitive places to avoid congregation of devotees at one place in the mela area.