Elaborate security arrangements have been made for peaceful Diwali celebrations in the Capital on Wednesday.
Armed personnel have been deployed in Karol Bagh, Paharganj, Sadar Bazar, South Extension, Lajpat Nagar, Greater Kailash, Sarojini Nagar and other market places. Door-frame and hand-held metal detectors are being used to screen visitors and constant surveillance kept through closed-circuit television cameras.
Random checking of vehicles at temporary pickets is also being done in coordination with the traffic police.
The police had earlier held meetings with market associations and other stake-holders to sensitise them on preventive steps to be taken. “All necessary counter-terror measures have been taken at the police station level. Besides quick reaction teams and SWAT squads are on a standby,” said a police officer, adding that security drills had also been carried out. One such mock exercise about a bomb having been planted at a Paharganj market was undertaken on Wednesday evening to test the alertness of police personnel.
This apart, security at metro stations has also been reviewed in view of general threat perceptions during the celebrations.
For its part, the Delhi Fire Service has also made adequate arrangements. Apart from the 14 fire stations, fire tenders have been stationed temporarily at half-a-dozen places across the Capital. “Fire tenders have also been kept on a standby at police stations and market places for quick response to any emergency. Such arrangements have been made at places like Lal Quan, Lahori Gate, Tilak Nagar, Nangloi, South Extension, Lajpat Nagar Central Market, Sonia Vihar, Mehrauli, Vasant Kunj, Alipur, Mangolpuri and DTC depot,” said an official.
Fire-fighters on motorcycles have also been deployed in the narrow lanes of congested localities, including Darya Ganj. “No major firecracker-related incident has been reported so far,” the official added.