MANAGEMENT OF KUMBH MELA
KUMBH MELA ADMINISTRATION

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
The Kumbh mela is held after every 12 years on the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the invisible Saraswati at Sangam, Allahabad. The Kumbh mela is an ancient tradition of India. For majority of Hindus, it is a primarily a sacred religious event where one can take a holy dip in the river Ganga to attain “Moksha” and wash away all the sins committed. It has been termed as one of the largest congregation of human beings at one place. In 2013, this mega pilgrim event was held for 55 days (14th Januray to 10th MArch) and attracted millions of footfalls. On the occasion of Mauni Amawasya (10th February, 2013), an estimated 30 million footfalls were expected. The management of the Kumbh Mela, to ensure smooth, seamless, safe and secure bathing for the millions of pilgrims, was the responsibility of the local Divisional/mela/district administration. A core area of around Sangam was to be converted into a temporary mega city with minimum of 1 million pilgrims residing on regular basis. The population would swell several times on the main auspicious bathing dates. This city was to have all the facilities like road, electricity, water supply, bridges, bathing ghats, Public Distribution, health, sanitation, drainage facility similar to any big sized city. This entire infrastructure was to be developed on sandy river bed in a highly compact time frame of 10 weeks. The challenge was formidable due to following factors: i. The permanent or legacy infrastructure was to be created before the Kumbh starts (i.e 1st January,2013) in a very short span of 8 months out of which, a minimum of 2 months was consumed by monsoons ii. The layout of the temporary Kumbh city could be finalized only after the monsoons receded and the river Ganges stabilized its course by 15th October. iii. Subsequently, the temporary infrastructure for the Kumbh Nagari was to be developed in a highly compressed time frame of 10 weeks during 15th October to 31st December. iv. The number of privately owened vehicles bringing the pilgrims was likely to increase manifolds due to the economic development in the past decade. v. The general rise in population of the country and the state in the past decade were likely to result in an increase in pilgrims by about 20 to 25 % over previous Kumbh. vi. The country has witnessed a quantum increase in religious and spiritual involvement of the citizens and a consequent increase in number of spiritual Leaders and organizations. All of them would certainly make their presence felt in this major spiritual event. vii. The demographic profile of previous religious events revealed that the large majority of pilgrim will be from the lower economic background and even semi-literate. viii. In India, women and elders are relatively more spiritually inclined. Thus it was expected that large number of older women with frail physique would be visiting. All the preparations and services to be provided will have to be planned keeping this aspect in mind.

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
The Kumbh Mela was to be managed under the overall administrative leadership of the Chief Secretary of the State. However, the direct responsibility was on the Divisional commissioner, Inspector General of Police of Allahabad and the District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police of the mela notified district. The shared vision of all stakeholders was "to ensure a safe, secure and comfortable stay for the millions of visitors and to amalgamate technology and tradition in a seamless manner preserving the sanctity of the mela”. To fulfill this vision, a well-organized, well-planned but temporary Kumbh city had to emerge from the river bed in a very short span of 10 weeks. Thereafter, Good Governance had to be ensured to manage operations and delivery of services in this "pop up" or ephemeral city" for millions of visitors for 55 days. The quality of services provided to millions of pilgrims staying and visiting the Kumbh Nagari for pilgrimage had to be exemplary. A high standard of hygiene, sanitation, law and order, crime control had to be maintained during the Kumbh Mela Some of key strategies used to meet the objectives were: 2.1 Ensuring appropriate but flexible Governance structures including Single Line of Command, objective and effective accountability mechanisms that are performance based, delegated and empowered civil services at operational level, an environment that encourages innovation, and technology based performance management system. 2.2 Need based-Pilgrim friendly Layout Planning of the temporary Kumbh Nagari. The core area of around 20 square kilometer was divided into 14 sectors. The layout was planned with broad roads running from east to west and north to south and a very large circulating area bear the Sangam where the pilgrims will undertake the holy bath. Each sector were to function as self-sufficient administrative unit. 2.3 High standards of sanitation and hygiene were to be maintained. This involved multiple strategies including usage of non-conventional-Zero Discharge Toilets near the river banks, installation of public toilets and urinals at strategic locations, accountable and systematic solid waste management systems with Standard Operating Procedures. 2.4 Sustainability in Operations through the "Clean Ganga-Clean Kumbh -Green Kumbh" initiative. This included multiple strategies of minimsing usage of polythene, discouraging holy offerings in the river while worshipping, preventing washing of clothes at the ghats and recycling of drainage water. 2.5 Security and safety of millions of pilgrims including the women, elders and children.. Several aspects needed to be covered included securing against terror, crime prevention including crime against women, disaster management etc. The strategies included i. Involving all Stakeholders/service providers in keeping vigil and reporting any suspicious activity. ii. Adoption of new technology for security and surveillance. iii. A multi-layered communication that addressed all categories of pilgrims. All communications with the pilgrims had to start on a positive note, by assuring them a safe bath. Then a request by policemen with folded hands, made the even the non complying pilgrim, pliant. iv. A centralized public address system covering the entire mela area for simultaneous dissemination of information. v. Guiding, regulating and providing services to the millions of pilgrims carried out with firmness but politeness in an extremely stressful work environment. 2.6 Availability of adequate and bathable water at Sangam was a very sensitive issue and linked to faith of millions of pilgrims.Three fold strategy was adopted i. Rigorous monitoring of effluent discharges from over 600 polluting units located upstream of the rivers. ii. Commissioning of the sewage treatment plant in Allahabad city before the start of mela. iii. Release of additional water from Tehri Dam located 800 km upstream.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
The enormity of human congregation is in terms of pilgrims living in the temporary Kumbh city and as well as the floating population coming to Sangam. The temporary city on the sandy bed, lives for 55 days and needs to have all the basic infrastructure and services of an urban city. This unique management challenge required a very innovative approach in structures, processes, logistical operations and delivery of services, which included: 3.1 Notification of the temporary city as a separate district with independent administrative setup. 3.2 Need based Layout Planning with sectors innovatively planned to function was a self-sufficient administrative unit. 3.3 Maintaining high standards of sanitation and hygiene and use of Zero Discharge toilets based on bacteria processing technology 3.4 Three stage Solid waste management. 3.5 Engagement of citizens and civil society in planning, strategizing and operations. 3.6 Successful Clean Ganga-Clean Kumbh -Green Kumbh Campaign that enabled availability of adequate river water with bathable quality and negligible pollution. 3.7 Polite but firm approach in regulating the crowd with communication channels that reach to all categories and class of pilgrims. 3.8 Ensuring behavioral change so that the last mile service provider are trained to act as facilitators to the visitors.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
Forecasting and initiation Forecasting of the number of visitors and infrastructure requirement was undertaken based on past records, socio-economic and demographic trends. It was estimated that the rise in pilgrim will be by 20%, the number of institutions participating by 30% over previous Kumbhs and number of vehicles on main bathing date can be upto 225,000. Based on these projections, an area of 56 square km was demarcated for notification as the notified mela district. Accordingly, by May, 2012, the separate Mela district was notified and the District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police were posted. Each of the 28 line departments had deputed their district level line organizational staff specifically responsible for preparations of Kumbh. Planning Apart from building the temporary structures, strengthening the infrastructure of Allahabad city which was the first touch point for most of the visitors to Kumbh was done. Planning for permanent infrastructure for the adjoining areas was carried out in May, 2011. The prime objective was to develop infrastructure that enables seamless movement in and out of the mela area and support the infrastructure and services required for the mela area. The resource planning for the Mela notified area was also undertaken in March-April,2012 based on the projections. Subsequently, all necessary measures for procurement and fabrication of required material were taken before hand so that the same is available by October, 2012 when the actual building of infrastructure sill start with the monsoons receding and the flood plains being available. The projects involving legacy and temporary infrastructure were then broken into activities and dates of completion of each activity were fixed as milestones. These milestones were fixed working backwards keeping in mind the last date of completion, which was 31st December,2012. These milestones acted as a measuring scale for performance of departments. Implementation Post planning stage, was the critical phase where all our planning had to be put to implementation. The implementation of legacy infrastructure started in April, 2012. Post monsoon, the work of transforming flood plains of Ganges to a city was also started. Like any other project, challenges and unforeseen situations were faced. Information and Communication Technology based MIS were used for performance management and review at district, division and state level. The service providers who would be the first point of contact with the pilgrims were getting trained so that their behavior is polite towards the pilgrims and they can guide them. Operations Finally all our efforts were put to litmus test when the mela kicked off in January,2012 with the first bathing date of Makar Sankranti. The actual management during the event involved day to day operations and problem solving. It was like civic management of the city having large population in a limited space. Each day was a new experience throwing up new problems which had to be managed there and then! The key elements of operations included i. Maintaining Relationship with the Akharas and other spiritual leaders/groups ii. Maintaining supplies and services(power,water,food) iii. Security and surveillance iv. Crowd management v. Traffic and transport management vi. Health and sanitation vii. Disaster Management Special efforts were undertaken for the following six main bathing dates i. Makar Sankranti 14.1.2013 ii. Paush Purnima 27.1.2013 iii. Mauni Amawasya 10.2.2013 iv. Vasant Panchami 15.2.2013 v. Maghi Purnima 25.2.2013 vi. Maha Shivratri 10.3.2013 Winding up Post Mela, the winding up of temporary city was undertaken between March and June,2013. The temporary infrastructure created was dismantled and reused; the site restoration done in order to bring the flood plains back to its serene self. The useable material so collected was redistributed across the state for public utilities.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
The key stakeholders involved in the planning and implementation of the initiative were: i. Government departments/agencies: There were 6 Central Government departments and 28 State Government departments who worked together with a single vision and mission– hosting the mela successfully. ii. Religious/Spiritual/Social /Institutions: They were the most prominent stakeholders and included: a. The Four peeths of Shankaracharyas, the most revered and respected religious leaders of our society. b. 13 akharas representing various sects of Hinduism, having their own hierarchy and organizational structure. The Shahi Snaan or the Traditional bath is undertaken by the Akhadas and their followers on three auspicious bathing dates of Makar Sankranti(14th January), Mauni Amawasya(10th February) and Basant panchami (15th February). These also include the naked naga sadhus and are a major source of attraction during the Kumbh Mela. c. More than 3000 other religious, social, charitable organizations which participated in the event. iii. Not-for-profit Organizations: Voluntary organizations were encouraged and facilitated. They helped the administration in handling critical operations related to Lost-and-found camps, pilgrim guides, shelter homes, food, healthcare etc. iv. Pilgrims: There were millions of pilgrims from across the world who attended the mela. The domestic pilgrims came from almost all the regions of the country. The Foreign visitors from more than 75 countries. They came with multiple objectives: Pilgrimage, Media coverage, travel writing, experiencing the congregation, research etc. v. Informal Sector: This consisted of local vendors, craftsmen, boatmen for whom it was peak time for business. Large footfalls, even with modest expenditure resulted in phenomenal volume of business. There was a huge economic spinoff for them. vi. Media: The event attracted a huge media attention across the globe. There were more than 2300 registrations of local, national and international media
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
6.1 Budgetary Support: The planning for the Kumbh was done by the Mela Administration and forwarded to the State Government. The Central Government provided Rs 1200 crores (or 200 million USD) assistance to the State Government. Out of this, around Rs 900 crores( or 150 USD) was utilized for development of permanent or legacy infrastructure of Allahabad city which was the first touch point for the pilgrims. The balance Rs 300 crores (50 USD) was utilized to develop infrastructure and provide services in the temporary city or Kumbh Nagari. Additional resources were also deployed by the Public Sector organizations like Railways, State Road Transport Corporation and the Central telecom agency (Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited) but these were recovered through revenues from the services provided). 6.2 Human Resource: The 56 square kilometer of Kumbh nagari was notified as separate district with independent District Magistrate deputed to manage. Separate and independent administrative structure for all the 28 departments associated with management was also put in place. Officers and subordinate staff were temporarily deputed from various units of the department across the state. These officials were reporting directly to the mela administration and accountable to this single authority. These notably included i. More than 10000 police personnel from 200 different formations including the State police, State paramilitary and central paramilitary formations. ii. 243 doctors and para medical staff from various State Government hospitals. iii. 7000 outsourced sanitation and Solid Waste Management workers iv. Power Engineers. v. Public Works Department Engineers and workers to build road communication and maintain it. vi. Engineers and workers for water supply and drainage services 6.3 Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives were invited to fulfill the needs and fill the gaps related to management of mela. The corporates were invited for purely noncommercial assistance. Various aspects in which the CSR initiative was implemented successfully were:- i. Zero discharge toilets in the mela area ii. Ladies change rooms at bathing Ghats iii. Lifesaving jackets on the boats. iv. Drum lines to regulate the movement of various boats. v. Purified drinking water outlets vi. Hoardings and brochures displaying the mela layout vii. Supply of Non Polythene bags. 6.4 The civil society groups were associated in managing the lost and found camps. These included the civil defense Organization, Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Smriti Samiti and the Bharat Sewa Dal. As many as 225,000 lost persons were reunited with their near and dear ones by the administration taking support of these organizations 6.5 The last mile service providers who were at the cutting edge of administration directly interacting with the pilgrims were given training on the behavioral aspects. The objective was to make them visitor-friendly and build their capacities so that they can guide the pilgrims. The service providers included Police, Home guards, Taxi drivers, Auto rickshaw drivers, Railway porters etc.

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
i. Road Communication: A network of over 174 km of motorable roads built on steel plates (termed as checkered plate). These roads enabled swift movement of vehicular traffic and pedestrians across the Kumbh city. These roads were linked through18 Pontoon bridges built across the river Ganga for convenient transportation. The pontoons were to be kept secure from the random erosion of banks by the ever changing current of the rivers. 5 temporary bus stations for convenient transportation of pilgrims were developed and more than 5000 buses were engaged during the main bathing dates. Parking for around 2.25 lakh vehicles was organized in 99 parking places in the periphery of the core mela area. ii. Health and Sanitation: Health of pilgrims was prime concern. Free of cost Safe drinking water was provided. More than 650 km of pipelines being fed were by 46 tube wells and 05 overhead tanks to provide 92 MLD of potable drinking water after treatment. 14 allopathic, 12 homeopathic and 11 Ayurvedic hospitals were developed having 375 beds manned round the clock by specialized medical and paramedic staff, supported by 123 ambulance and 4 river ambulances for prompt medical attention. More than 30000 individual toilets, 3400 seated conventional public toilets and 630 seats of non-conventional zero discharge toilets were installed. The visitors were pleasantly surprised to witness that sanitation facilities were being kept clean 24x7 despite a very heavy utilization throughout the mela duration. The entire mela area was kept free from flies and mosquitoes for preventing spread of communicable diseases iii. Safety and Security: More than 10,000 security personnel manning 30 police stations in the mela are providing security, safety, disaster management and crowd control Safe and secure 5.5 Km long temporary ghats, properly illuminated, were provided on the slopes of the banks. iv. Power Supply: A network of around 900 km of power transmission lines providing power connections with more than 25000 street lights and a generator backup were developed. A 24 hour uninterrupted power supply was ensured. 65 generators were installed as power backup to face any contingencies. CFL bulbs were used for energy savings. The glitter and safety of the mela was a result of these measures. v. Essential Supplies: 124 fair-price shops were providing food grains, sugar, milk and kerosene oil at reasonable prices to more than 100,000 families undertaking “kalpvaas” through ration cards and to around 3000 organizations based on permits.

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
A Single line of command was set-up. Both aspects –administrative and financial were addressed. The funds sanctioned for projects were routed through the mela administration. The administrative setup was constituted by temporally deputing officials from other districts. The State Government thus notified that the Divisional Commissioner and Mela Adhikari shall have the powers to assess the performance of all officials working under the Mela administration. This made them accountable and work towards a single vision.. For monitoring, the strategy of benchmarking was implemented. The result benchmarking was through the concept of Third Party Inspections (TPI) and the process benchmarking was through the fixing and monitoring milestones. The TPI system covered two aspects. Firstly, to technically verify the quality of material being used and processes being followed in civil works and secondly, the physical verification of progress reported by the agencies. Professionally competent, reputed and independent third party inspectors were assigned this job. Departments were asked to set milestones in each projects related to Kumbh. The milestones were nothing but specific dates for completion of multiple activities that are involved in completion of any project. A simple but innovative net based Project Monitoring Information System (PMIS) was developed. This PMIS enabled real time reporting of progress on milestones of various projects without any paper/manual report handing. Exception reports were generated on projects where milestone were not being meet. These projects were the reviewed to pinpoint the bottlenecks and fix specific account ability. This innovative intervention helped the administration to undertake very focused, to the point reviews for timely completion of projects. Regular review meetings were being held at State, Division, District level where monitoring based on completion of milestone was undertaken. The entire Kumbh city of 20 square kilometer was divided into 14 smaller administrative units termed as sectors. Once the mela started, a sector level review and monitoring system was put into place. Each sector was headed by a Sector Magistrate who was an officer of the level of Deputy Collector with all line departments represented. There was a review meeting of all Sector level Officers organized every day to identify and resolve critical issues. Thereafter, there was a review and monitoring meeting at the Mela Headquarter Office at 6 pm every day. The purpose of headquarter level meetings was to address the issues which have not been able to be resolved at the sector level.

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
9.1 General election to the State legislature were held between Novemberr,2011 and March,2012. Work in the field could not start before April,2012 due to the Model Code of Conduct. The time lines for various milestones were reduced accordingly. Further, the works that were not vital for success of the Kumbh were either dropped or postponed. 9.2 The delayed monsoon of 2012 resulted even further reduced time span available for implementing projects of temporary infrastructure for the Kumbh Nagari. The administration undertook an exercise of re-prioritizing the projects. The projects that were required at the start of the event (i.e 14th January) were completed first followed by those which were required for the main bathing date of 10th February. 9.3 In the late evening of 10th February, while the bathing at Kumbh Mela was conducted seamlessly and successfully, there was an unfortunate stampede at the Allahabad railway station as the pilgrims were returning by trains. This resulted in deaths of 37 persons. Although this was a major setback, but the administration faced this challenge boldly. While the rescue and relief operations were handled swiftly, the administration took several steps to raise the morale of pilgrims and staff deployed on duty. These measures resulted in management of operations in the Kumbh Nagari continuing smoothly and glitch free. 9.4 The region witnessed very heavy rains and thunderstorms on 15th and 16th February. This resulted in waterlogging of lower regions of river bed and drenching of camps. Disaster mitigation measures were swiftly undertaken in a well-coordinated way to secure the camps and ensure that there are no casualties due to drowning or electrocution. The roads were repaired and 24 hour electricity supply was also maintained. These measures enabled restoring of normalcy within 2 days and resurgence of pilgrim crowds subsequently.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
i. The Kumbh mela was witness of a huge turned out of pilgrim tourists throughout the event starting on 14th of January till 10th March. There were more than 120 million footfalls estimated during the 55 day event. On the occasion of Mauni Amawasya (10th February,2013), estimated footfalls were more than 30 million ii. The visitors had a life time and satisfying experience while visiting the mela and undertaking the spiritual activities. The word of mouth publicity resulted in huge turnouts of pilgrim right till the last day. iii. Throughout the event, as per the police records, there was not even a single incident of body offence in the Kumbh Nagari or the city of Allahabad. The entire area remained incident free as far as crime is concerned and visitors felt safe and secure event while moving around in the nights with women and children iv. There was no crime against women reported in or outside the Mela area. This was despite the fact that women in large numbers were visiting the ghats at odd hour for taking the holy dip and also staying in the temporary dwellings for several; days. v. The exemplary standards of cleanliness and hygiene were maintained throughout the 55 days across the mela area spanning 20 square kilometres. It was very heartening to observe these workers undertaking cleaning operations at odd hours immediately before and after the bathing. By late evening, all the critical areas were cleaned up. vi. As per the medical surveillance records, there was no outbreak of epidemics during the Mela period. The disease pattern revealed routine ailments related to cold weather. vii. There was not a single death due to drowning resulting out of any boat capsizing during the mela period. The disaster mitigation strategies had contributed significantly in prevention. viii. The most critical three Shahi Snans of the Akhadas were managed peacefully, seamlessly and without any dispute or violation of peace. ix. There was no terror activity in this highly sensitive event involving presence of millions of people. x. More than 225,000 lost persons were re-united with their near and dear ones. xi. The event are used a lot of interest among the researchers within and outside the country. Researchers and academicians from reputed Business Schools like Harvard have undertaken or sponsored studies on various aspects of management of Kumbh Mela. xii. The quality of services in terms of power supply, water supply, communication and traffic management, sanitation was a source of appreciation by the visitors cutting across all sections of the society. The management has been termed as a model of Governance for India by the international media and World Bank representatives. Estimated Pilgrim footfalls during Kumbh 2013 Bathing Days Kumbh 2013 Bathing days Dates Estimated Visitors Makar Sankranti 14.1.2013 85 Lac Paush Purnima 27.1.2013 51 Lac Mauni Amawasya 10.2.2013 300 Lac Vasant Panchami 15.2.2013 83 Lac Maghi Purnima 25.2.2013 91 Lac Maha Shivratri 10.3.2013 67 Lac The assessment of impact was based on: i. The official records of Mela administration ii. The findings of research undertaken by Harvard University and the HBS case study on Management of Kumbh Mela. iii. Testimonials by dignitaries The HBS case study has considered management of Kumbh mela as successful. One of its members(1) commented " as a student of architecture and anthropology, I realize that the ability of a city to literally rise from the dust is an administrative and architectural feat." Mr Victor Mallet(2) while reporting in his article " Pop-up megacity is a lesson for India quotes Onno Ruhl, head of the World Bank in India who called it “an incredible logistical operation” and that " the city on the sandbanks, soon to be dismantled before the river floods has water, sanitation, power, solid waste management, everything, actually, that many Indian cities lack". According to the World Bank(3) , "The Kumbh’s public-private partnership model highlights potential avenues for India to meet these daunting obstacles... With an urban population set to double over the next 20 years, India should harness the exceptional planning skill displayed at the Kumbh." 1.http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/education/news/Mapping-the-Kumbh-mela/articleshow/18551716.cms The Diplomat/By Daniel Rubin and Cody Poplin, 2.http://asiafoundation.org/in-asia/2013/04/10/lessons-from-indias-pop-up-megacity-the-kumbh-mela/ 3. http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/58a2b464-80a5-11e2-9c5b-00144feabdc0.html

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
The innovative and efficient civic management of a 20 square Km tented temporary city is a Governance marvel that has a potential to be expanded and replicated in following areas or public services. 11.1 The initiative was sustainable as Green strategies were successfully implemented. These included the minimal use of polythene, minimsing the holy offerings in the rivers, recycling of drainage water, zero discharge toilets producing no solid or liquid waste. The winding up were also carefully supervised to ensure proper dismantling of temporary structures, site restoration and redistributing the useable in order to bring the flood plains back to serenity. 11.2 The cost of operations, considering the enormity of operations and the level of services provided were quite reasonable and model for replication. To illustrate, 50 million USD were spent by Government on developing the temporary city and providing the services. Considering that an average of one million persons stayed and utilized these facilities for 55 days, the cost of operations comes to only USD 1 per capita per day. This is very reasonable considering that there was uninterrupted free of cost water and power supply, well illuminated streets, motorable roads, safe bathing ghats, sanitation, cleanliness, security, safety and crowd control measures made available by the Government. 11.3 The Kumbh Mela is organized in a cycle of 12 years at Prayag-Allahabad, Haridwar, Nasik and Ujjain. The experience of Governance and management of Kumbh Mela-2013 will be used in managing other three in a better way. There have been exchange of best practices between the organizations responsible for managing them 11.4 India is a deeply religions society and religious events are being held across the country. Such events attract a large numbers of visitors. The best practices of Kumbh 2013 can thus be replicated for improved crowd management, civic management and pilgrim satisfaction of such events. 11.5 The Management of this mega event has provided an opportunity to undertake research on various aspects related to urban planning, health & sanitation, crowd management and civic management for getting deeper insights into various aspects of managing large congregations. The wisdom gained by experience and insights gained through the research undertaken with scientific rigor will contribute significantly in developing expertise in managing similar large congregations in a better way with effective resource allocation. 11.6 World faces situation of disasters like Tsunami, earthquake, floods wherein temporary relief camps have to be developed in a very short time for the disaster victims. We also face situations like communal, ethnic or civil strife wherein temporary shelter homes for victims of such violence have to be developed and maintained over a long period of time. The requirements of services and infrastructure at these relief camps are similar to those that were provided in the Kumbh city, even though the reasons for their setting up may be entirely different. The Standard Operating Procedures, operational wisdom and appropriate technologies developed in Kumbh -2013 can be used in such situations for quick setting up and effective management of relief camps.

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
There have been multiple lessons learned while planning, implementing, managing operations and undertaking innovative practices during Kumbh-2013 which can help in developing a framework for managing such mega congregations effectively. Some of them are i. Connecting with the last mile worker : The experience of Kumbh revealed that regular and open interaction with those who are at the cutting edge of operations and delivery of services helped immensely in bringing clarity about existing problems and also solving them through innovative solutions. Most of the innovations at the operational level were generated from the grass root level interactions. It also helped in obtaining honest feedback about the state of preparedness, identifying the potential conflict situations before they turn into crisis, motivating these workers and helping them share the organization's vision. ii. Empowering the grassroots level worker to take on-the -spot decision in public interest by giving them the confidence that actions or decisions taken in good faith will be supported by the leadership. Several unforeseen situations were avoided by this strategy as the person in charge on the spot took quick and appropriate decisions. This was possible as they had the confidence that any such decision will have full backing and support of the leadership. iii. Changing the archaic and bureaucratic mindset and inculcating problem solving attitudes: The officials were motivated to imbibe the overall vision of Kumbh and work forwards its fulfillment. The decisions taken by supervising officers during the review meetings or spot inspections were quick and non- bureaucratic. This not only encouraged the grass root level officials to give ideas, but also to implement them. iv. Involving stake holders and civil society in innovation: The probability of successful and sustainable implementation of innovations and its wide scale acceptance is enhanced by involvement of relevant stakeholders and civil society at appropriate stages. A new initiative can be termed as innovation only when it has been successfully implemented in a real life situation. v. Preventing "No dearth of money syndrome': This is a concept explained by V.K Shunglu committee which went into the appraisal of Commonwealth Games-2010 of Delhi. While managing mega events that are of sensitive nature or national importance, there is a tendency witnessed to gold plate the project costs or to include such projects that are not vital or essential for the success of the event. The motive is often to serve some vested interest or undue financial gain. These efforts succeed due to lack of oversight or due diligence and also because the management is busy tacking crisis situations. While managing Kumbh, extreme care was taken throughout the project implementation cycle to ensure that such tendencies are curbed. No superfluous projects were considered. Projects that may be important but unlikely to be completed before the start of the mela were either dropped or postponed. This helped in preventing infructuous expenditure to a large extent and also completion of works in the critical mela area in time and helped in any criticism of mismanagement.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   KUMBH MELA ADMINISTRATION
Institution Type:   Government Department  
Contact Person:   DEVESH CHATURVEDI
Title:   DR.  
Telephone/ Fax:   +91-522-2238973/2238967-Fax
Institution's / Project's Website:  
E-mail:   d.chaturvedi@nic.in  
Address:   2nd FLOOR, YOJANA BHAWAN, LUCKNOW
Postal Code:   226001
City:   LUCKNOW
State/Province:   UTTAR PRADESH
Country:  

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