India international trade fair to kick off at Bharat Mandapam today
The Delhi traffic police issued an advisory on Monday warning commuters that heavy congestion was expected on several roads
A day before the India International Trade Fair (IITF), the Capital’s annual flagship event, returns in its 42nd edition at the revamped Pragati Maidan complex, the Delhi traffic police issued an advisory on Monday warning commuters that heavy congestion was expected on several roads.
The trade fair, which will be held from November 14 till November 27, will be inaugurated at the Bharat Mandapam at 3.30pm on Tuesday. The traffic advisory said a crowd of more than 40,000 people on weekdays and 100,000-200,000 on weekends is expected to visit the fair. It said congestion was expected on Mathura Road, Bhairon Marg, Ring Road, Sher Shah Road, and Purana Qila Road, and cautioned visitors to avoid these roads.
Officials of the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), which oversees the ITPO complex at Pragati Maidan, the event’s venue, said the theme of this year’s fair is “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam - United by Trade”.
So far, 482 private exhibitors and 3,000 stalls from government departments and agencies have signed up for the 14-day fair, a senior ITPO official said on Monday. “We expect at least 3,500 exhibitors in this edition. At least 13 foreign countries will be exhibiting their products,” said the official.
The focus states are Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra. The foreign countries are Afghanistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Iran, Vietnam, Kyrgyzstan, Indonesia, Thailand, Tunisia, Oman, Egypt, Turkey, and Lebanon. “China, South Africa, and Korea have not participated in the trade fair since the Covid-19 outbreak,” the official added.
The first five days of the fair will be for business visitors, following which it will be opened to the general public on November 19. Officials said that tickets priced at ₹80 for adults on weekdays and ₹150 on weekends can be bought online or at 55 major Metro stations, barring the Supreme Court Metro station.
“The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has started selling entry tickets at 55 Metro stations for the ‘business days’ from Tuesday. Tickets for ‘general public days’ (November 19 to 27) will be sold from November 19 onwards. However, tickets will not be available for sale at the Supreme Court Metro station or venue to prevent overcrowding,” an official added.
According to officials, this will be the largest trade fair since the annual event began in 1980. It will have a covered area of 110,000sqm and all the exhibition halls will be put to use. The two amphitheatres and musical fountains sites in the revamped complex will be used for cultural events. The expected footfall during the 14 days shall be more than 1,000,000. The large basement parking sites under the complex are also being put to use during the trade fair for the first time, they added.
ITPO and traffic police urged people to use public transport to reach Pragati Maidan. “Those coming by Delhi Metro may de-board at the Supreme Court Metro station and enter ITPO through gate number 10, or use the shuttle service for entry through gates 6 and 4,” it said.
The traffic police said there would be no entry for visitors from gate numbers 5-A, 5-B, 7, 8, and 9, and visitors would be allowed entry from gate numbers 1, 4, 6, and 10. “The drop point for chauffeur-driven vehicles, taxis, and autos will be on the service lane in front of gate numbers 3 and 7 of ITPO and also near the entry gates of the basement parking space. Entry will be barred after 5.30pm on all days,” the advisory said.
The traffic advisory said no vehicle would be allowed to halt or park anywhere on Mathura Road, Bhairon Marg, Sher Shah Road, Purana Qila Road, Bhagwan Das Road, and Tilak Marg, adding that vehicles found parked here would be towed away to Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium and parked at its gate number 5 parking facility.
“The new complex has two basement parking facilities with a combined capacity of 3,000 vehicles, which exhibitors and visitors will use. The Bhairon mandir/zoo parking will also be available,” a second official added.
A third ITPO official said that besides hosting a food zone, the three amphitheatres and musical fountain will host two cultural evenings starting from 3.30pm. “At least 22 states have been provided slots to showcase regional art forms in amphitheatre one. Maharashtra will be performing on Wednesday, followed by Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu. The state days will culminate with West Bengal on November 26,” the official said. Amphitheatre two and the musical fountain are expected to host cultural performances by artists such as Amjad Ali Khan, Jayaprabha Menon (Mohiniyattam), RK Majumdar (Santoor), and Ustad Abdul Hamid Sabri (Qawwali).