One million people set to visit Pashupati on MahashivaratriPolice publish plans to facilitate traffic around the temple area.
The Pashupati Area Development Trust has completed all preparations to welcome around one million people to the annual Mahashivaratri festival on Friday.
Trust authorities, who plan to open the gates of the temple at 3 am, have made provisions for four queues—one in each direction—for pilgrims to get into the main temple.
A total of Rs7.2 million has been allocated for managing the festival this year, said Pradeep Dhakal, member secretary of the trust. The trust will feed sadhus, provide them accommodation, firewood and an allowance, he said. Over 5,000 sadhus from around the country and various parts of India have already arrived at Pashupatinath. The Pashupati trust expects to welcome around 1 million people this year, said Dhakal.
“This year, we have also decorated the temple premises to give the visitors a better feel,” added Dhakal.
Around Rs 5.2 million had been allocated for the festival last year, when 1.1 million people visited the area.
Meanwhile, 30 organisations have set up health stations on the temple premises. According to Metropolitan Police Range, Kathmandu, as many as 4,500 personnel in uniform and others in civvies will be mobilised to secure the temple premises. A few personnel from the Nepal army will also be deployed, according to Dhakal.
Traffic management plan for Mahashivaratri
Metropolitan Traffic Police Division has released its plan to facilitate the movement of people on Mahashivaratri from Tinkune to Gaushala and Chabahil areas. According to police, live updates on the traffic situation in Kathmandu will be available on Metro FM 95.5. Members of the public can dial 103 to enquire about the situation.
Senior Superintendent Bhim Prasad Dhakal said a total of 449 traffic police personnel will be mobilised in the area to ease vehicular movement from 3 am. The office has announced that vehicles will not be allowed to head towards Gaushala from Chabahil. Similarly, the Gyaneshwor- Maitidevi and Ratopul stretch and the Sifal Chowk-Jaya Bageshwori section have been deemed no-go zones.
“Decisions on traffic diversions and no-entry zones will be taken after assessing the flow of visitors in the area,” said Dhakal. The office has designated a separate parking area for foreign visitors in Tilganga. Parking facilities shall also be provided at Sifal and Guheshwori corridor. This time, traffic police have also banned roadside businesses from selling their wares on footpaths in the Pashupati area.