Thousands of devotees on Thursday thronged the 16th century Tripura Sundari temple and a mega fair organised near its premises on the occasion of Kali Puja and Diwali. The temple, built by Maharaja Dhanya Manikya in 1501 A.D, is one of the 51 Shakti Peeths and legend has it that Sati's right foot fell during Lord Shiva's 'Tandav Nritya'.
The two-day fair, considered the biggest in the state, attracts visitors from within and outside the state, every year. "More than two lakh people gather here every year to offer pujas and participate in the two-day fair," MLA and chairman of the Matabari Mela Committee Madhav Saha said.
At least 500 volunteers and security forces have been deployed and 30 close circuit cameras installed in the fair complex for security, Saha said. "Measures have also been taken for uninterrupted power supply during the fair," he added.
Over 1500 stalls have been set up on the fairground, including the pavilions of the state government departments highlighting their developmental works. "Ambulances and fire tenders have been pressed into service on the fair premises and the festival committee has also set up basic amenities like toilets and restrooms for the devotees," the MLA said.
Meanwhile, a special train from Silchar in Assam to Udaipur in Tripura was launched by Northeast Frontier Railway(NFR) today on this occasion. "The special train was announced by NFR yesterday. It left for Udaipur from Silchar at 7.30am today and should reachUdaipur in Tripura by 6 pm," the GRP superintendent of police, Jitendra Debbarma, said, adding that the schedule would remain the same tomorrow.
The train would benefit not just the people of Assam but also devotees from other parts of the state, said Anupam Bhattacharya, who boarded the train from Dharmanagar in Tripura today. "We are happy that a special train has been launched for Udaipur. The Matabari shrine is considered the holiest in the state. The special service would give us an opportunity to participate in the fair," he told PTI over the phone.