NO MELA SURCHARGE DURING KUMBH MELA DECIDES RAILWAYS
In an important decision relating to the Kumbh Mela, scheduled to be organized in Prayagraj next year from 14th January to 4th March, 2019, the Indian Railways has decided not to impose any ‘Mela Surcharge’ on the tickets of trains in different classes-from General to First AC.
Indian Railways, which is gearing up in a major way for the mega-event, earlier levied the existing mela surcharge at Allahabad Jn, Naini, Allahabad Chheoki and Vindhyachal Stations during ensuing Kumbh Mela. However, in a major relief to the pilgrims coming to the Kumbh Mela, It has now been decided that now NO Mela Surcharge will be levied during the Kumbh Mela 2019.
Speaking on the decision, GM/NCR, Shri Rajiv Chaudhry said that while there is major investment by the Railways in the Kumbh Mela, the burden of the same would not be passed on to the pilgrims and tourists coming to Prayagraj to participate in the Kumbh. “We are in the process of completing 41 major infrastructure-augmentation works in Allahabad comprising of all three railways: NCR, NR and NER, to the tune of about 700 Crore which will make the Kumbh-experience of the pilgrims and tourists pleasant and memorable” he added.
It is also pertinent to mention here that in order to considerably augment the Railways infrastructure facilities for the pilgrims, 41 works costing more than Rs 700 are being done. Out of these, 29 works have already been completed and the rest are in an advanced stage and will be completed shortly. These are works of permanent nature which will help in subsequent years also. Facilities and amenities at Allahabad Jn station are being upgraded and strengthened to facilitate pilgrims during their visit to the Kumbh Mela next year. Four big enclosures to house about 10,000 pilgrims have been constructed at Allahabad Jn. Railway Station. These enclosures will have vending stalls, water booths, ticket counters, LCD TVs, PA System, CCTVs and separate toilets blocks for Ladies and Gents. Similar passenger enclosures are also built at other stations. Skywalk connecting to main FOBs at Allahabad Jn. has been completed. This will help to ease out pressure on any one of the two main FOBs by enabling the passengers to move to the other FOB seamlessly in case of a build up of crowd on any one of the two main FOBs.
Besides these major works like widening of Road Under bridges & construction of 4 ROBs in Prayagraj Area have been completed while other important works like Development of Satellite terminal stations are nearing completion. The branding of Kumbh on the coaches of special trains proposed to be run during the Kumbh Mela as well as the originating trains of the NCR has also started and by now more than 150 coaches have been wrapped with vinyl paintings.The announcement regarding scrapping of existing mela surcharge has come as gift to those coming to participate in the Kumbh.