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Unable to get tickets, many visitors stranded at Delhi trade fair’s first Sunday

With the number of visitors to the India International Trade Fair capped at 60,000 per day and no tickets being sold at the venue, many visitors were left stranded at the gates of Pragati Maidan on Sunday.

delhi Updated: Nov 19, 2017 23:57 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Trade fair,Pragati Maidan,Delhi fair
63,000 people visited the trade fair at Pragati Maidan in New Delhi on Sunday. (Sanchit Khanna/HT PHOTO)

With the number of visitors to the India International Trade Fair capped at 60,000 per day and no tickets being sold at the venue, many visitors were left stranded at the gates of Pragati Maidan on Sunday.

Only a little over half the area of Pragati Maidan is being used this year for the fair as state pavilions and many halls have been razed for the construction of the new International Exhibition cum Convention Centre.

Because of safety concerns arising from a limited space, the number of visitors had been capped at 60,000 per day this year. No tickets were being sold at the gates of Pragati Maidan or the metro station there. Tickets had to be booked in advance online or at the other metro stations.

“But we realised some people were coming early in the morning and leaving early. So we sold some extra tickets. Our footfall was over 60,000 and maybe close to 63,000 on Sunday,” said Vikas Malhotra, general manager, corporate communications division, at India Trade Promotion Organization (ITPO), which organizes the fair.

Last year, the footfall on the first Sunday of the fair was around 1.5 lakh. This year too, many people were seen waiting at the gates, unable to get in as they had not got tickets.

“This is my first time at the fair, and I have come with three other families. I did not know that they would not be selling tickets here, and now I am not able to buy the tickets online. I think they are sold out. So even though I spent around Rs 500 to get here, it was all for nought,” said Azhar Ahmed, a resident of South Delhi.

Others like Karan Sakya, a northeast Delhi resident, said that he was unable to get tickets at Mandi House, Janpath and Rajiv Chowk metro stations either.

The Kashyaps, who had come in a group of 11, said that they were unable to find tickets at the Mandi House, Barakhamba, Laxmi Nagar, Nirman Vihar, or Rajiv Chowk stations.

“We finally got the tickets at Anand Vihar station. We had tried booking it online first, but the transaction kept getting cancelled,” said Aarti Kashyap.

Malhotra explained that they had earlier allotted 80% of the tickets to metro stations and 20% for sale online, but later decided to enhance online sales in response to the demand. “We heard some metro stations had run short of tickets but these were replenished later,” said Malhotra.

First Published: Nov 19, 2017 23:56 IST