With the commencement of the holy month, Sawan or Shravan, Kanwar Yatra too began on Monday. It is a religious journey where devotees ritually carry water from a holy source in the containers that are suspended on either side of a pole. They travel the distance on foot, few also travel on bicycles, motor cycles, scooters, mini trucks or jeeps. However, keeping in mind the traffic congestion that is caused by the month-long Kanwar yatra every year, traffic restrictions are in place on the Kanwar Yatra route in parts of Uttar Pradesh this year. Not only this, the yatra is also unlikely to have loud music and even hockey sticks will be absent from the scene, as reported by India.com.
As per the source, the number of kanwarias is expected to go up this year, from that of last year’s 3.24 crore. Though the security agencies are on standby to take care of the increased number of devotees. According to the traffic department, the routes for the heavy vehicles will be also diverted from 8 pm every Friday till 9 pm on Monday. While, on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri (July 21), heavy vehicles will be diverted from 8 pm on July 19 till 9 pm on July 21. For the roadways buses and small vehicles, routes will stay diverted from 6 am every Sunday to 9 pm on Monday. On July 21, it will be from 6 am on July 20 until 9 pm on July 21, as reported by News Nation.
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Besides this, all meat shops on the Kanwar Yatra route in the Ghaziabad district have been ordered to remain closed. All eateries on the route have also been instructed not to display non-vegetarian dishes till Maha Shivratri celebrations on July 21. Kanwarias or devotees who carry pitchers of Ganga water won’t be allowed to go beyond the Neelkanth Mahadev temple in Rishikesh this year.