Several roads in Lutyens’ Delhi area witnessed a chock-a-block situation while revellers stood in serpentine queues inside and outside metro stations as huge crowds thronged the India Gate, Connaught Place and various religious places in the national capital on New Year’s Day.
“Be it in metro or on roads, there is no space in several areas of central Delhi,” a commuter said.
As people had a hard time entering and exiting Rajiv Chowk, Patel Chowk, and Central Secretariat metro stations, an official said many commuters did not have smart cards or online tickets which contributed to the long queues.
Those with smart cards or online tickets were being allowed by CISF personnel to go first at security checkpoints. Some people claimed on social media in the evening that entry was closed at the Central Secretariat Metro Station.
Massive crowds gathered at the India Gate, Prachin Hanuman Mandir, Bangla Sahib Gurdwara and Connaught Place circle, resulting in traffic chaos.
Traffic was heavy in other parts of the national capital as well, forcing people to take to X to complain about the situation. According to commuters, heavy traffic was witnessed in Chhattarpur, Barakhamba crossing towards Mandi House, Rajendra Prasad Marg roundabout, Sarai Kale Khan flyover, Mathura Road and Singhu Border to Mukarba Chowk, among others.
A bumper-to-bumper traffic was also witnessed near the India Gate and Mandi House while people also thronged Kartavya Path, leading to a jam-packed situation there.
A senior police officer said, “Adequate arrangements were made at various temples and markets since December 31. Teams are maintaining law and order condition.” “One platoon of paramilitary personnel with eight staffers of the Delhi Police were deployed at Hanuman temple as well as at Connaught Place inner circle and metro stations to manage the crowd,” a police officer said.
Lokesh Bhardwaj, a priest at Kalkaji Mandir, told PTI there was a massive surge of visitors seeking blessings on the first day of the new year. “People have been reaching here since December 31 and the numbers are still increasing,” he said.
Harmeet Singh Kalka, the president of the Delhi Gurdwara Management Committee, also said that there was a continuous stream of devotees visiting holy sites. Huge traffic was witnessed near Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, chocking the road towards Connaught Place.
Kalka said that they have hired extra staff for ‘langar’ (community kitchen).
Deepankar Sharma, a volunteer at Prachin Hanuman Mandir, said that there will be a huge crowd at the temple till Tuesday.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)