Non-release of `1000 crore by the Central government to Uttarakhand is likely to affect the preparations for Ardha Kumbh scheduled to be held in January 2016, state officials said.
The Ardha Kumbha, which is held at Haridwar every six years, is a crucial revenue earner as it draws pilgrims from every part of the world, the officials
Chief minister’s media in-charge Surendra Aggarwal said the state government had demanded `1000 crore in 2014 as support to hold the three-month-long , socio-religious event.
Chief minister Harish Rawat on Monday placed a fresh request with the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) for quick release of funds as a further delay could hamper the preparations for the fair, he said.
The preparations largely include getting the basic infrastructure ready for a heavy floating population of tourists and pilgrims.
Their intercity travel and security are the major concern, Aggarwal said, adding that some works had already begun as the state government had released R165 crore funds for the purpose.
However, upper fair officer Meharban Singh Bisht said non-release of funds by the Centre won’t affect the fair but, of course, it might affect the “works pertaining to setting up of new transformers, construction of new sewer lines, drinking water lines and construction of sheds at different sites in the city for the pilgrims.”
In 2010, the mega fair had attracted nine lakh pilgrims .