Volunteers At Kumbh To Help Lost Pilgrims
Date 2013/1/17 17:25:00 | Topic: Hindu Press International
ALLAHABAD, INDIA, January 16, 2013 (Daily Mail): The lost-and-found family drama is an everyday experience for those at the Maha Kumbh mela. A Bhoole Bhatke Shivir ("lost and found camp") is ready to help pilgrims locate each other within hours of getting lost in the crowds at the fair.
The Shivir, meant for those separated from their families at the Kumbh, is marked by two huge yellow balloons with the words Bhoole Bhatke Shivir, which the pilgrims can see from a distance and reach for help. Since January 13, a day before Makar Sankranti, people who run the service have been flooded with panic-stricken visitors from different parts of the country.
The block has policemen and volunteers helping out the visitors by making announcements on microphones. The mikes are connected to speakers that blare out messages across the huge expanse of the Kumbh's 700,000 tents and the area at the edge of the Sangam.
People come in with chits bearing the names of those they were with and the names are read out. "In a day we get at least 500 cases," said Pushkar Upadhyay, a volunteer. There are rarely any cases of people not finding their group members.