UPSC Civil Services GK Update: Ujjain prepares for an eco-friendly Kumbh

Dear Readers,

Current affairs forms an important component of several competitive exams such as the UPSC Civil Services Examination, SSC CGL, Bank PO & PSU entrance tests, etc. Therefore, understanding terms/concepts/events that are in the news is critical for aspirants. We at PaGaLGuY bring you this series of articles in which we shall explain some of these important concepts/events for you. In this article we will be discussing about Simhastha Mahakumbh.

One of the four places of Kumbh Mela that is held once every
12 years, Ujjain, will attract millions of pilgrims come April 2016 for the
Simhastha Mahakumbh. The event, which will see devotees descending to take a
holy dip in the Kshipra river, will be held from April 22 to May 21. The Madhya
Pradesh state government has issued several directives to ensure eco-friendly

The Simhastha Kumbh is celebrated when planet Jupiter rises
to zodiac sign Leo’s (Simha) quarter (hence the name Simhastha). As a fitting
rule for this spectacular celebration of divinity, the government has ordered
zero use of plastic items in the area. Also, only bicycles and battery-operated
vehicles will be arranged for devotees to travel in.

A blanket ban on any and all plastic items including
bottles, bags, water cups etc. has been declared. Instead items made of eco-friendly
materials like paper and jute will be promoted during the fair. Madhya Pradesh
Urban Administration and Housing minister, Kailash Vijayvargiya also stated
that around 259 huge battery-operate vehicles and numerous bicycles will be
required for smooth transportation of people during the fair. Efforts will be taken
to install sufficient water-vending machines to reduce dependence on bottled

A meeting with international environment experts will also
be held.

Special Trains

Another highlight about the Simhastha Kumbh is that the Western
Railway (WR) has planned to run 100 special trains to meet the rush of
passengers going to the event. The WR is also planning to build an over bridge
for devotees in Ujjain at a cost of Rs 27 crores.

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