Sporting saffron caps, ‘kurtas’ and scarves, youngsters took out the yatra from Rani Avanthi Bai Hall at Dhoolpet in the afternoon, culminating at the culminated at Hanuman Vyayamshala at Koti

The environs of Dhoolpet, Mangalhat, Begum Bazaar and surroundings came alive on Friday as thousands of devotees participated in ‘shobha yatra’ organised on the occasion of Sri Ramanavami in the State capital. The yatra passed off peacefully amidst tight security.

Sporting saffron caps, ‘kurtas’ and scarves, youngsters took out the yatra from Rani Avanthi Bai Hall, Dhoolpet in the afternoon. Corporator Raja Singh, who recently joined the BJP, organised the yatra. Organisers performed puja to the idols of Sri Rama, Sita, Laxmana and Hanuman, and carried them in a decorated chariot.

The lanes and bylanes of the area reverberated with “Jai Sri Ram” slogans with many youth welfare organisations playing devotional songs through music systems. Free food distribution programmes and special ‘bhajans’ were also organised all along the procession route. This apart, 10-feet high idol of Sri Rama became main attraction during the celebrations.

The rally passed through the main thoroughfares of Mangalhat, Jummerat Bazaar, Begum Bazaar Chatri, Gowliguda and culminated at Hanuman Vyayamshala, Koti. As the yatra entered different residential colonies, devotees welcomed it by showering flower petals on the idols.

Traffic police diverted vehicles through alternative routes to ensure smooth conduct of the yatra. Barricades were placed in the lanes connecting main roads to restrict entry of other vehicles. By 10 p.m., the rally reached Hanuman Vyayamshala.

The top brass of the city police, including Additional Commissioner of Police (law and order) Amit Garg, DCPs R. Jaya Lakshmi and G. Sudheer Babu, among other officials monitored security arrangements in the wake of recent twin blasts at Dilsukhnagar. As it was Friday, police deployed additional police forces, including Rapid Action Forces, at sensitive areas. Policemen used video cameras to record speeches of the religious leaders who attended the rally.

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