Security scaled up for kanwar fair in Haridwar; drones, CCTVs to be used for monitoring
Fool-proof security cover will be provided for the Kanwar fair, to be held here from July 28 to August 10, with drone surveillance, CCTV monitoring and deployment of anti-terrorist squad (ATS) commandos, officials said.dehradun Updated: Jul 21, 2018 22:39 IST
Fool-proof security cover will be provided for the Kanwar fair, to be held here from July 28 to August 10, with drone surveillance, CCTV monitoring and deployment of anti-terrorist squad (ATS) commandos, officials said.
Kanwar Yatra is a pilgrimage by Lord Shiva’s devotees to collect Ganga water, which they offer in local temples. The water is stored in pitchers and carried by the devotees on their shoulders on a pole made from bamboo, known as ‘kanwar’. The devotees are popularly called ‘kanwariyas’.
Expecting more than 3.50 crore kanwariyas this year, the kanwar fair administration has appointed four super zonal magistrates, 26 zonal magistrates, and 200 sector magistrates.
The core mela zone of Har-Ki-Pauri, sensitive places, kanwar stretches, railway stations, bus stands, and parking lots in Haridwar and Roorkee will be under drone surveillance. Police assigned for fair security are coordinating their counterparts in Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Haryana, and Punjab, from where kanwariyas come in big numbers.
It has been decided that the height of decorated kanwars will not be more that 6 feet this year. “Only kanwars of 6 ft height will be allowed, as higher the kanwars more the chances of accidents and inconvenience to people,” deputy inspector-general (Garhwal range) Ajay Rautela said on the sidelines of a meeting held to review preparations for the kanwar fair. Police have directed kanwar makers at Jwalapur, Pantdeep, and Ganga ghats of Har-Ki-Pauri to follow the norm.
Uttar Pradesh police have sought deployment of National Security Guard (NSG) commandos; Uttarakhand police will deploy ATS commandos, trained on the lines of NSG.
“Security will be ensured at kanwar fair through drone surveillance and CCTV (closed circuit television) monitoring. Bomb disposal squads will carry out checking and frisking at Har-Ki-Pauri, railway station, bus station and other sensitive pockets,” Rautela said. “Bomb squads will be on duty round the clock during the kanwar pilgrimage and number of watch towers will be increased.”
Haridwar senior superintendent of police (SSP) Krishan Kumar VK and his Saharanpur counterpart Upendra Kumar inspected the kanwar route in the bordering areas of the two states.
“Our main focus is on ensuring effective flow of information during kanwar fair. As the major flow of kanwariyas is from Uttar Pradesh, both states have decided to deploy police personnel within 2km gap on kanwar stretch,” Krishan Kumar said. “Patrolling will be done on both sides. Intelligence inputs and information about kanwariyas’ number, route diversion and traffic congestion will be shared.”
Kanwar fair nodal in-charge Mamta Vohra inspected the stretch from Har-Ki-Pauri to Meerut via Dakmoti and Mayapur. “Joint checks posts of UP-Uttarakhand police will be vital in managing the flow and security of kanwariyas,” Vohra said.
“No DJ points have been earmarked and all the departments concerned have been asked to ensure time-bound completion of basic facilities and infrastructure for the fair.”
First Published: Jul 21, 2018 22:39 IST