With 3 months left for it to begin, security personnel for Kumbh Mela to arrive in phases
With nearly three months to go for the commencement of the Mahakumbh Mela in Haridwar, the Mela administration has started planning for security aspects in advance.
Mela police administration is also ensuring preparation and planning in case Covid-19 spread is curbed by March 2021 and there is major footfall of pilgrims.
The four-month long fair will be manned by the Uttarakhand Police as well as central paramilitary personnel of the Indo Tibetan Border Police, Central Reserve Police Force and Provincial Armed Constabulary among others.
The arrival and deployment of the Kumbh Mela security personnel is being planned in five phases which may be changed according to restrictions, e-passes, number of pilgrims approved by the government during Kumbh, mela officials said.
According to Inspector General of Kumbh Police Force Sanjay Gunjiyal, elaborate security arrangements are being planned for the mega fair with emphasis on ensuring effective force deployment and utilisation.
“Already under the first phase, local cops of the Kumbh force from the state police have arrived and in another three to four phases the rest of the personnel will arrive, as the Kumbh date nears. Coordination, sharing of intelligence input, information, traffic control and also adhering to social distance norms will be priority for the Kumbh mela force,” said IG Kumbh Gunjiyal.
For the first time Mela Force Police lines will also get shifted from inner-city Rishi Kul ground to the outer Neeldhara area adjacent to Ganga for Mahakumbh.
At this police line Kumbh Police stations will be based and a briefing hall will be set up to ensure the convenience of addressing a large number of mela force personnel at one place itself.
“Apart from companies of paramilitary forces, a bomb disposal squad, commando unit and anti-mine team have been sought from the Central government for Kumbh Mela. From terror threat to intelligence information sharing, communication set up requirement and keeping tab through drone surveillance, the Kumbh Mela will be a thoroughly secure one,” said Kumbh force Circle Officer Prakash Chandra Deoli.
As part of the buildup for the Kumbh, mela force administration had recently invited Prayagraj Range Kumbh 2019 Deputy Inspector General, Uttar Pradesh KP Singh to seek guidance and for devising strategy and planning for the Haridwar Mahakumbh.