Dagdusheth Halwai temple closed; Thousands of devotees on road cause mega traffic jam
PUNE Using Chhatrapati Shivaji road was difficult for commuters on Tuesday, as there was a massive traffic jam outside the Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai temple. As Tuesday was Angarkhi Chaturthi, the temple administraion decided to close the temple against the backdrop of the increasing number of Covid cases in the city.
Still, thousands of faithful were present seeking blessings of the temple’s Ganesh statue, from the roadside.
Public transport buses and other vehicles were diverted by the Pune traffic police, as there was huge crowd present throughout the day.
“We were fully prepared and extra bandobast was given to clear the expected crowd. Though the temple was closed for darshan, devotees were coming right from early morning and till late at night. Accordingly, our police bandobast was deployed outside the temple area and on road to clear the rush and monitor the traffic. Public transport buses were diverted to another route,” said assistant commissioner of police (traffic) Vijay Chaudhary.
The traffic jams began from the Shaniwarwada chowk till the Dagadusheth temple. Vehicles were moving slowly on the Shivaji road throughout the day, if at all.
Mahesh Suryavanshi, treasurer, Dagdusheth Ganpati Mandal trust, said, “We have taken all the necessary safety precautions at the temple and today it was closed for public darshan. Online darshan was going throughout the day on our mobile application and website for devotees across the world. Still we need to respect the faith of people who came to take darshan from outside, and good traffic management was done by Pune traffic poilce.”
Sagar Abnawe, a Ganpati devotee said, “On every Chaturthi day I come to Dagadusheth Ganpati temple to take darshan and today, being one of the most important Chaturthi’s in the year, I had to come here. I was bit disappointed when I got to know that temple was closed, but then I took the darshan from outside and it took me an hour to walk to the temple and take darshan as a massive crowd was there.”