Unprecedented security arrangements have been made for the 89 Rathyatras of Lord Jagannath in different parts of the State, Gujarat Director General of Police (DGP) S S Khandwawala said here today.
“Besides the 65,000 police force in the state, five companies from Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharastra have been requested along with 20 companies from the Central government, for the Rathyatras in different parts of the State on July 13,” he told reporters here.
Mr. Khandwawala said there were no specific intelligence inputs of threat during the Rathyatra.
“But an event where lakhs of people take part, there is need for tight security arrangements. All necessary precautions have been taken in this regard,” he said, adding that the Army also has been asked to remain alert.
The DGP said that special security arrangements have been made for the Rathyatra of Lord Jagannath in Ahmedabad city which is the biggest in the State.
Besides, CCTV cameras, GPS tracking devices and video cameras, intensive checking and combing operations were on in various cities to ensure peaceful rathyatra.
“The atmosphere in the sensitive areas of Ahmedabad and other cities is peaceful ahead of the Rathyatra. People of all communities would participate with equal enthusiasm,” Mr. Khandwawala hoped.
“We have also talked to community leaders and have held mohalla and peace committee meetings in sensitive parts of Ahmedabad. Everybody seems to be enthusiastic about the grand event,” Mr. Khandwawala said.
Those who had indulged in communal violence in the past would be kept under watch and their activities monitored, the DGP added.
In all 136 yatras have been scheduled in different districts of the State, which include 89 Rathyatras of Lord Jagannath and 47 ‘shobha yatras’ taken out in small localities of cities.
In Ahmedabad, 133rd Rathyatra of Lord Jagannath, which is the biggest in the state, would be organised under robust security arrangements with over 14,000 policemen deployed across the city along with 4,500 home guards.
Forty cameras have been set up for continuous video recording and monitoring of the rathyatra, while 200 specially trained men by the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) would screen the Rathyatra route before it passes through the area.
Also, 3000 persons have been detained ahead of the yatra. Four Bomb Disposal Squads (BDS), nine quick response teams (QRTs), and 27 mobile Police Control Room (PCR) vans would also be deployed for the Rathyatra in the city.