Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh State Roadways Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) will mobilize around 6,000 additional buses to facilitate hassle-free travel of pilgrims to the Kumbh Mela that begins at Allahabad from January 14, officials said on Friday.

Transport officials said the 55-day congregation is likely to witness around four crore people arriving in the Sangam city. UPSRTC spokesperson Ajay Kumar Srivastava told reporters that the advance booking of tickets has already begun and that the buses would operate in three phases.

In the first phase (Jan 10-Feb 5), 1,800 buses will be pressed into service to ferry pilgrims from the state's various bus stations to Allahabad, while in the second phase (Feb 6-16), 2,000 additional buses will be introduced. In the third phase (Feb 17-March 10), the UPSRTC will introduce 2,750 additional buses for the devotees heading to the Sangam city.

Some buses will also make additional trips to towns like Ayodhya, Chitrakoot, Sarnath, Vindhyachal and Varanasi. The UPSRTC spokesperson said 262 buses will make 604 trips to these religious towns on normal days, while on special days (bathing days) 660 buses will make 1,655 trips. A temporary bus station has been built at Phaphamau to control overcrowding at the Civil Lines and KP College bus stations in Allahabad.

Temporary facilities at the Mukhya Mela bus station, KP College ground, and Arail Agriculture Institute ground have been upgraded. A control room has also been set up, the spokesperson said.


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