If Friday and Saturday were chaotic at the Auto Expo, Sunday turned out to be worse. As expected, it was a full house at Pragati Maidan with around 80,000 visitors flooding the venue.
With a contingent of more than 35,000 people comprising officials manning the stalls, the total number of people at the venue, however, reached well beyond the one lakh cap, said a senior police officer.
The main organiser of the show, Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), said that around 60,000 tickets were sold on Sunday and the total number of people visiting the show remained within one lakh.
The display halls were completely packed and long queues were seen outside the enclosures of foreign car brands such as Mercedes, Volkswagen and BMW. “All you could see was a sea of humanity. All management put in place by the automobiles giants collapsed and entry points to the enclosures had to be shut for some time,” the officer added.
And it wasn’t only the mismanagement and unruly crowd at rules the Expo on day three, tricksters and black marketers also made the most out of Sunday. Many black marketers were seen black marketing tickets outside the venue.
Traffic congestion were also experienced in central Delhi throughout the day. Looking at the limitations of Pragati Maidan, CII is now mulling a range of options, including shifting the show out of central Delhi. “From the present experience, it could be said that the venue is not fit for Auto Expo,” the officer added.
For foreign automobile giants too, the overflowing crowd has become a bit of a headache. “It becomes difficult as people try to get inside the enclosure. People falling on each other to take the pictures of cars, I don’t think they can ever be our potential customers,” said an expat, who works with an international automobile giant.