CPI(M) activists have threatened to wave black flags at Chief Minister

Police forces have been deployed in strength in and around the Jawahar Stadium here, the venue of the Chief Minister’s mass contact programme on December 17. The roads surrounding the stadium are likely to be brought under a security ring from Monday night.

The road from the Police Club to the road facing the main entrance to the stadium and two other entrance points to the venue are already secured by the police, mobilised from Thrissur and districts north of it, in view of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) district unit’s announcement that a large number of Left Democratic Front (LDF) workers would assemble there on Tuesday to wave black flags against Chief Minister Oommen Chandy.

New applicants

Entry to the secured zone surrounding the stadium would be restricted to those who had been issued letters allowing them to see Mr. Chandy during the programme, officials, special invitees, and media.

New applicants who want to see the Chief Minister would be allowed entry only after 1 p.m., that too if they produced documents proving their identity.

The venue and the key areas surrounding it would be brought under a security surveillance system comprising dozens of CCTV cameras and videographers and a control room to monitor the live footage.

3,000 policemen

Officers in charge of security said that over 3,000 police personnel, including 30 Deputy Superintendent of Police, 36 Circle Inspectors and 150 sub-inspectors, were being deployed in and around the stadium.

The personnel included local police, armed reserve, armed police, and the Thunder Bolt.

The security arrangements would be handled by Additional Director General of Police N. Shanker Reddy, Inspector General (Kannur Range) Suresh Raj Purohit, and Superintendent of Police Rahul R. Nair.

Senior officers led by Mr. Reddy inspected the venue in the afternoon.

The police personnel also conducted several dry runs in the town.

Convoys of police vehicles sped past with sirens and lights at the rehearsals. Barricades have been set up at the Police Club Junction, Goods Shed Road, near the Press Club, Old Bus Stand Junction, Yogasala Road, SPCA Road Junction, Pamban Madhavan Road Junction, and Mahatma Mandiram Juction. Government officials have been directed to reach the venue by 6 a.m.

Rural Development Minister K.C. Joseph had said at a press meet here on December 15 said that unprecedented security arrangements and restrictions were being made in view of the CPI(M) district leadership’s reported claim that the protest of December 17 would be a show of the party’s strength in Kannur district.

The government and the police could not afford to take any chance given the attack on the Chief Minister during his visit here on October 27, he said.

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