No DJs, hockey sticks in ‘kaanwar yatra’
A joint meeting of police and central forces also decided that kaanwarias who carry pitchers of Ganga water won’t be allowed to go beyond the Neelkanth Mahadev temple in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand Director General of Police MA Ganpathy said, adding that efforts were on to ensure safety for pilgrims during the event.dehradun Updated: Jun 20, 2017 21:08 IST
: DJs, hockey sticks and tridents bigger than six inches will not be allowed to be carried by devotees during the annual ‘kaanwar yatra’ in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Delhi, an official said on Tuesday.
A decision to this effect was taken at a joint meeting of police officials from the four states and the national capital and other security agencies here Tuesday.
It has also been decided that kaanwarias or Shiva devotees who carry pitchers of Ganga water won’t be allowed to go beyond the Neelkanth Mahadev temple in Rishikesh, Uttarakhand Director General of Police MA Ganpathy said, adding that efforts were on to ensure safety for pilgrims during the event.
The kaanwar yatra is beginning from July 10.
The DGP said the pilgrims would be under watch at every stage -- right from the start of their journey to the destination and vice- versa.
Ganpathy said that senior police officers from the other states, and officials from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Sashastra Seema Bal and other central reserve forces were unanimous that the activities of kaanwarias should be kept under strict watch.
“Considering security needs of religious places in the prevailing circumstances, all necessary steps must be taken to keep law and order under control during the upcoming festival,” Ganpathy said.
He urged all police officials, including those from other states, to identify sensitive locations on kanwar routes and ensure adequate deployment of security forces there. Ganpathy asked them to prepare their action plan to keep a check on unruly activities of kaanwarias.
DIG, Garhwal range, Pushpak Jyoti said there has been a steady rise in the number of kanwarias in the last several years. “From 15-20 lakh in 1985-1990, it went up to 3.24 crore in 2016. This could go up this year,” he said.
Ganpathy directed the Kaanwar Yatra nodal officials to create WhatsApp groups for keeping police personnel updated about activities of the pilgrims. Joint check by police forces of two states at interstate check posts was another suggestion. Location of community meal centres at safe and proper sites was another focus point of the intestate security meeting.
WITH AGENCY INPUTS