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Security tightened in Tripura, Assam for Durga Puja

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Agartala/Silchar, Sep 30 :

Armed with sophisticated weapons and electronic gadgets, a large number of security personnel have been deployed in Tripura and Assam for the Durga Puja.

The puja began Tuesday with ‘Maha Sasthi’ or ‘Bodhan’- the welcoming of the Durga idols.Durga

“The BSF has been asked to maintain a close watch on the India-Bangladesh border to ensure that the festival is free of any untoward incident,” Tripura’s Inspector General of Police Nepal Das told reporters in Agartala.

Over 20,000 security personnel and quick reaction teams besides bomb and dog squads have been deployed in Tripura.

The personnel, equipped with sophisticated arms, electronic gadgets and binoculars, have been positioned in many watch towers in Agartala and Tripura.

“Counter-insurgency operation against the outlawed militants would be intensified by Assam Rifles, CRPF and the Tripura State Rifles in the terrorist prone and hilly areas,” Das said.

He said intelligence networks have been activated and police pickets and mobile and foot patrolling will be conducted.

With a little increase over last year, at least 2,335 community and about 100 family Durga Pujas have been organised in Tripura.

Many CCTVs have been installed at sensitive locations while people at big puja venues will have to pass through metal detectors.

“Unlike previous years, there are no reports about tribal guerrillas creating problems or asking people not to organise the puja. The number of Durga Pujas has also increased in rural and remote areas,” Das said.

Despite incidents in the past when rebels targeted Hindus for celebrating religious festivals, pujas are being organised in about 300 tribal and extremist-prone areas this year.

For uninterrupted power supply during the festival, Mizoram and Meghalaya are supplying electricity to Tripura, which as a reciprocal gesture will supply power to the Christian-dominated states during the Christmas festival.

Security was tightened further in southern Assam, dominated by Bengalis and people from other northeastern states.

“Besides strengthening of normal security, movement of trains will also be monitored in southern Assam,” a police officer told reporters at Silchar, one of the main commercial cities in southern Assam.

In Assam, puja committees are working round-the-clock to make their preparations foolproof and to provide an interesting time to the pandal hoppers.

The Uzanbazar Barowari Durga Puja Mandap in Guwahati is celebrating 125 years of organising Durga Puja with an 11-day programme that started Sep 23.

(IANS)