New Delhi: BJP Thursday renewed its demand to Delhi Government to declare November 19 as public holiday on the occasion of Chhat Puja in an effort to woo around 40 lakh Poorvanchali people who can play a crucial role in next year`s assembly elections.
"The Delhi Government should declare public holiday on November 19 on the occasion of Chhath Puja respecting the sentiments of 40 lakh Poorvanchali people living in the city," Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta said.
The Delhi BJP had made a similar demand last year but Delhi Government had turned it down.
With assembly polls slated for November next year, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had yesterday met a number of prominent Poorvanchali leaders and promised to come out with a long-term plan for improving facilities for Chhat Puja celebration.
Addressing a press conference, Gupta today demanded better facilities at Chhath Ghats in the city so that people celebrating the festival do not face any inconvenience.
Expressing unhappiness over the arrangements made by the government, Gupta demanded medical facilities, putting up of tents and toilets and deployment of disaster management teams in all Chhath ghats along the Yamuna.
Devotees flock to various ghats along the Yamuna to offer prayers to the Sun on Chhat Puja, which is celebrated in Delhi by people from Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar who are referred as Poorvanchali.
This year`s Chhat Puja will be celebrated on November 18 and 19.
Gupta also demanded separate transport services for the devotees so that they can visit the Chhath Ghats without any hassle. He said BJP will depute around 10,000 volunteers for helping the devotees at various Chhath Ghats.
The Delhi BJP president said all the three party-ruled municipal corporations have been told to ensure proper cleanliness at the Chhath Ghats.
The Delhi government has already issued instruction to concerned agencies to make adequate facilities at important ghats along the Yamuna. Officials said tents will be erected near the ghats for convenience of the pilgrims.
They said Delhi Police has been told to install CCTV cameras at the ghats in order to provide fool-proof security. Revenue department will bear the cost of installation of CCTVs.