With the Maha Kumbh Mela 2012-13 just round the corner, the Mela administration is gearing up to ensure adequate security at the event, with the safety of women figuring high on its priority list.
Additional Superintendent of Police, Rajesh Kumar, said the security of women would be given priority and besides deploying a large number of female constables, special arrangements will be made to check incidents such as eve teasing.
Around 30,000 police personnel, including paramilitary personnel and commandos, would be deployed during the Mela, while 30 police stations and 40 outposts will also be set up.
Elaborate arrangements have been made to counter any terror threat, including round-the-clock deployment of the National Security Guard, the Rapid Action Force personnels and bomb disposal squads.
The Mela premises would also be served by the STF/ATS personnel, surveillance and rescue helicopters, sniper apparatus and hot air balloons.
Forty-five CCTVs will be installed in the Mela area, including some in all the 18 pontoon bridges, which connect different ghats of the Ganga to each other.
To counter eventualities such as bomb explosions, stampedes, burning and drowning, Quick Response Medical Teams (QRMT) have been formed as part of a medical disaster plan, informed Dr. Major D.P Singh, Joint Director medical services Kumbh Mela.
Besides this, the Mela premises will be facilitated with a 100-bed super-specialty central hospital, ten zonal hospitals, two infectious disease hospitals, and 37 ambulances.
For the first time, four Water River Ambulances (WRA)will also be deputed during the main bathing days, which attract the bulk of the crowd.
"Judging by past records, the pilgrims are most likely to suffer from acclimatization problems. Asthma and arthritis patients usually flood the hospitals. But only 30-40 percent of the beds were occupied in the last Mela (2001)," said Dr. Singh.
The Mela involve pilgrims bathing under low temperatures at odd hours of the day.
The mega event, which occurs every twelver years is estimated to attract around 100 million visitors this time.
The Uttar Pradesh government has also instructed VIPs and other high officials to restrain from entering the Mela to avert any crowd disorder.
It must be recalled that during the 1954 Maha Kumbh Mela, at least 500 persons died following a stampede on the main bathing day of Mauni Amavasya.The tragedy was linked to Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru's visit to the event.
Around three million people are estimated to bathe at the Sangam on this day alone, this time.