With over 25,000 policemen, including 8,600 home guards, drawn from city and other parts of the State, security arrangements are in place for the mammoth Ganesh festival celebrations that began across Hyderabad two days ago.

While preparations were on for the immersion of idols on September 5, 7,8, 9 and 10, police were doing every bit to ensure the final mega procession on September 11 passed off peacefully, the Hyderabad Police Commissioner, A.K. Khan, told a press conference on Saturday. Taking into consideration the delay in procession last year, efforts were on to finish the final procession early so that people can start their work routine normally on Monday.

Since the delay was caused in moving idols from Old City, the South Zone police officials were holding discussions with local Ganesh pandal organisers, Bhagyanagar Utsav Samithi members and other elders to ensure it didn't recur this time. Fourteen main junctions along the procession route from Old City to MJ Market were identified.

“Police officers who earlier worked in city and familiar with the law and order problems here would be posted at these points for better co-ordination,” the Commissioner said. Makeshift toilets would be set up along procession route for the convenience of people and even the washrooms in police stations located on the procession route can be used by them.

Mr. Khan appealed to people not to use four-wheelers to reach Tank Bund but avail local and MMTS trains or bus services. Even those coming from districts better use city buses or local trains, he said. All fly-over bridges would be closed for regular traffic on the day of final immersion.

Big and small, nearly 40,000 idols were expected to be immersed in Hussainsagar this year from Saturday to September 11 while over 10 lakh people would witness the final procession. Processions had started from Saturday and would continue every alternate day till Wednesday. Thereafter, immersion of idols would take place every day till September 11 on which day around 6,000 idols are expected to be immersed.

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