Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Jul 4:
With the much-awaited Nabakalebara Rath Yatra in Odisha’s holy town Puri just two weeks away, Odisha police have beefed up security measures to ward off any possible untoward incident to ensure the safety of the devotees.
“Unlike previous years, we have made special security arrangements for this year’s Rath Yatra with the deployment of additional forces and more police officials. Keeping in view the anticipated footfall of a large number of devotees in the holy town to witness the mega festival, two units of anti-terrorist squad, two units of Special Operation Group (SOG), 500 policemen in the rank of DSP, IIC, sub inspector, assistant sub inspector, havaldar and constable, 2500 home guards and 100 platoons of police would be deployed. Besides, Coast Guard personnel would be deployed along the beach area to keep a watch on suspicious movement of boats and ships. For proper monitoring and supervision of the entire security network, 11 SPs and 15 deputy commandants would be engaged,” Director General of Police (DGP) Sanjeev Marik told reporters after presiding over a review meeting here on Friday.
Referring to traffic management, he said arrangements have been made to ensure systematic parking of small and large vehicles at different locations in and outside Puri. The policemen on duty would monitor vehicular movement from several parking places in and on the outskirts of Puri to enable the devotees to reach the Bada Danda (Grand Road) comfortably.
The DGP also informed that 60 CCTV cameras have been installed inside the temple to control crowd movement during Pahandi. Besides, 40 CCTV cameras have been installed at key areas on the Bada Danda (Grand Road) and 65 more at sensitive locations in the town.
“Our focus will be on smooth crowd management around the three chariots during Pahandi,” Marik said.