Thursday 21 March 2019

Artificial Intelligence real showstopper of Kumbh Mela 2019

From over 1,000 cameras to using technology for waste disposal, the 2019 edition of Kumbh mela was more than just fanfare.

The Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj, the largest congregation of humans, ended earlier this month with over 20 crore devotees taking a dip in the Sangam, the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers.

There was more to the 2019 edition of the festival than just fanfare, as it made its way into the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest crowd management, sanitation drive and painting on public sites.

The highlight of this year's Kumbh, however, was the use of artificial intelligence (AI) for the first time to manage the gathering.

More than 20,000 cops were deployed for safety and management of the crowd at Kumbh Mela. (Photo: Purushottam Diwakar)
The Larsen and Toubro Group was tasked with ensuring smooth traffic movement, managing security, disposing of garbage and crowd surveillance.

Here's a look at how AI was used to make the grand festival a success.

As many as 1,100 CCTV cameras were installed by the group's construction wing at over 260 vantage points across Prayagraj to monitor the crowd.

Equipped with sensors, these cameras would raise a soft alert when the crowd density exceeded three people per square metre, and a stronger alert on recording five people or more.

At the Kumbh Mela, cameras were equipped with sensors to monitor the crowd. (Photo:ANI)
These cameras could identify trouble-makers.

Despite challenges -- with devotees walking with bags on their heads and dust due to continuous movement -- the cameras could track suspicious individuals. After such faces were filtered, police teams would receive an alert. This was followed by the suspect's questioning by the police.

The cameras were connected to the group's two Integrated Command and Control Centres (ICCC) - one at Kumbh and other at Police Lines in Prayagraj. These centres provided the authorities with crucial information like Automatic Number Plate Recognition, Red Light Violation Detection System and Face Recognition System.

Live streaming and real-time data updates were broadcast at two integrated control centres from all the cameras.

The integrated dashboard had a bird's eye view of the city.

The traffic police, with the help of the group, set up an Intelligent Traffic Management System across 19 junctions in the city.

These junctions provided a continuous feed to the administration to manage the flow of traffic. The traffic movements were integrated via Google maps.

Every day, generated solid waste was channelised through 500 dustbins and 48 dumping locations, tracked via GPS.

An AI-based Solid Waste Management System was used to route collection vehicles based on bin sensor data and traffic data.

(Source: India Today)

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