Magh mela.. Image Source: IANS News

Prayagraj : , Dec 2 (IANS) More than 5,000 policemen from civil police and other wings like ATS, STF, paramilitary forces, SDRF, NDRF, BDDS, fire, anti-mines and traffic, who will be deployed for the Magh Mela in Prayagraj next month, will have to undergo antigen and RT-PCR testing before joining the Mela duties.

The Magh Mela begins from January 14 next year.

According to Inspector General (IG) (Prayagraj range) K.P. Singh, "We would be conducting antigen and RT-PCR tests of the police personnel arriving from different parts of the state for the Magh Mela duties. Police forces from different districts, including Fatehpur, Pratapgarh, Kaushambi, Mahoba, Hamirpur, Banda, Chitrakoot, Varanasi and Gorakhpur are being deployed at the Magh mela township for the month-long religious congregation." He, however, said that the antigen and RT -PCR testing of the policemen coming from different parts of the state, would help the authorities in checking the spread of the virus and the police officials would also be maintaining a strict watch on the testing and its outcome".

The officials of the health department have already asked devotees wanting to perform 'kalpwas' (month long stay at the township) at the banks of river Ganga during the Magh Mela to bring along a negative RT-PCR test report with them in order to get an entry in the Mela ground.

The devotees will have to undergo a test every week during their month-long stay.

Other visitors to the Magh Mela will also be tested for the Covid virus.

A senior official said, "We would be taking all corrective measures to contain the spread of Covid-19 during the month-long Mela period and adequate health facilities would be offered to the devotees, pilgrims and the staff on duty. A network of 110 CCTV sets will be installed to maintain a close watch in every nook and corner of the Mela campus. Mobile police teams and pickets would be deployed at all entry and exit points.

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