The Gautam Budh Nagar district administration has imposed prohibitory orders in the district under section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). With vote counting and election results scheduled for Saturday, followed by a number of festivals and the upcoming board exams, the orders will be in place till the end of April to prevent any untoward incidents. Section 144 prohibits assembly of five or more persons at one place.
All police officials and subdivisional magistrates (SDMs) have been instructed to hold meetings with local communities and take them into confidence. Police and district administration officials have been holding meetings with local communities and religious groups to maintain peace and prevent any incidents arising out of disputes over election results or religious festivals.
Additional district magistrate, Kumar Vineet, said, “The administration is preparing itself to handle any unforeseen circumstances arising from election results, and to maintain harmony during festivals.”
Officials said prohibitory orders will be in force in the entire district from Thursday till April 29. Counting for the UP assembly elections is slated to take place on March 11 (Saturday), followed by Holi on March 12 (Monday), Dulhandi on March 13, Ramnavmi on April 4, Mahaveer Jayanti on April 8, Hazrat Ali’s birth anniversary (Yaum-e-Ali) on April 11, and Ambedkar Jayanti on April 14.
“The law and order situation in some areas can become tense after the announcement of election results on March 11. Further, there are several religious festivals lined up in March and April. Hence, it was decided to impose Section 144 in the district for two months. We want people to celebrate festivals in peace,” said Vineet.
The ADM added that the prohibitory orders are also necessary for smooth conduct of board examinations and prevent malpractices during the exams.
Through the orders, the district administration has put a curb on general assembly of public, processions, use of weapons that may cause hurt, demeaning religious symbols, gods, personalities or communities, or spreading hatred.
The order further reads that no loudspeakers shall be played within 200 metres of the Noida flower market where counting of votes will take place on Saturday.
To prevent organised cheating in board examinations, the orders also restrict the use of loudspeakers, photostat machines, mobile phones and unusual gathering within 200 metres of exam centres.