Selfie Mat le le re: Kumbh Mela designates 'No selfie zones' to avoid stampedes

You may have heard of the ghats and river at the Kumbh Mela in Nashik. But from this year onwards, there is another unusual place at the pilgrimage site — The No Selfie Zone.

There are huge banners and boards around the ghats in Nashik and Trimbakeshwar showing the selfie symbol with a red ban sign around it, according to a report by The Indian Express.

Representational image of the Kumbh Mela. IBNLive

Representational image of the Kumbh Mela. IBNLive

The reason for the ban is simple — selfies could lead to stampedes, as found by a "human behavior study' conducted by over 100 volunteers. The study was conducted by volunteers linked to Kumbathon-TCS Gappa Goshti platform, an online collaboration to help officials monitor the Mela, continues the report.

“Since 13 July, our volunteers on the field have been collecting data which showed that people stop to take selfies. They also climb to dangerous spots to take selfies,” Sandip Shinde, CEO of Kumbhathon told The Indian Express.

A report by DNA in July had also referred to the survey by Tata Consultancy Services and Kumbhathon, and said that the Nashik administration was contemplating declaring certain spots as 'No Selfie Zones' and raising awareness about the potential dangers of people holding a camera or mobile taking a picture of themselves.

"It takes between 30 seconds to a minute for a person to take a selfie. But the problem is that the person gets completely engrossed with the phone camera, forgetting the surroundings. In a crowd as large as 60 lakh, estimated numbers for the parvani days, if people stay engrossed taking their selfies in the river, on the banks or enroute, it could lead to a disaster. People wait, stop in between during the flow of the crowd and this could lead to a stampede," Sandip Shinde, was quoted as saying by DNA.

So while Salman Khan may have urged us to 'Selfie le le re' in a Bajrangi Bhaijaan, it is best not to do it at the Kumbh Mela.

Updated Date: Sep 01, 2015 17:16 PM

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