Allahabad: Pilgrims visiting the city for the almost two-month-long Kumbh Mela beginning in January next year will have to deposit polythene bags at police checkpoints on the borders of the district.

Addressing a review meeting of Kumbh Mela arrangements, Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Javed Usmani on Friday directed the state's Information Department to give "widespread publicity" to the ban imposed on polythene in the district that came into force on November 1.

Devotees will be allowed to carry bags of cloth and jute, Usmani said. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has decided to make a request to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for supply of subsidised cooking gas cylinders, ration and kerosene oil during the Kumbh Mela which commences on January 14, he said.

The Chief Secretary also directed Principal Secretaries to visit Allahabad every 10 days to review progress of their respective departments in Kumbh-related works.

Inspector General of Police of Allahabad, Alok Sharma, informed the meeting that 85 CCTV cameras will be installed next month in the Kumbh Mela area.

There is a proposal to operationalise another 127 CCTV cameras at important and sensitive places of the city. The Chief Secretary said these places should be identified at the earliest for the event, which ends on March 10.


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