4,000 hectare tent city on anvil for Mahakumbh 2025File photo of Kumbh

Virendra Singh Rawat

A mammoth 4,000-hectare ‘tent city’, plausibly the world’s largest, is on the anvil in Uttar Pradesh to host the world’s largest congregation of an estimated 400 million pilgrims and tourists at the Prayagraj Mahakumbh 2025.

Interestingly, the total population of UP is nearly 250 million, which means that the state would host more people during the pious 45 days of Mahakumbh in Jan-Feb 2025 than its residents.

The massive tent city will be illuminated with 67,000 streetlights and comprise 2,000 tents and 25,000 public accommodations.

About 23,000 CCTV cameras and an AI based chatbot system will provide the security and safety paraphernalia to the temporary settlement.

An array of road projects, makeshift bridges, hospitals, markets etc will dot the proposed 25 sectors of the tent city in Prayagraj (formerly Allahabad) district at Sangam, the confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati rivers.

Hindus consider Prayagraj as one of the holiest cities, which gives salvation if one bathes at the ‘Sangam’ point.

The Prayagraj Mela Authority is mandated to organise the Kumbh Mela. While Mahakumbh Mela and Kumbh Mela occur every 12 and 6 years respectively, Magh Mela is an annual affair.

Earlier, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath announced Mahakumbh 2025 will be organised on a much grander scale than the Ardhkumbh 2019, when an estimated 240 million pilgrims had converged to the holy city.

So far, UP has approved 384 projects worth Rs 7,500 crore for Mahakumbh 2025. The projects pertain to departments including tourism, roads, bridges, health, medical, power, irrigation etc.

To complement the traditional channels of communication and branding, the Yogi government 2.0 is harnessing the social media for a global branding of Mahakumbh 2025 as well as ‘Brand UP’.

Moreover, the UP State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) is looking to replenish its ageing fleet with 5,000 brand new buses ahead of the Mahakumbh.

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