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Security tightens as Chaturthi begins




Round-the-clock police patrolling has been planned by the Goa police in view of the safety and security arrangements during Ganesh Chaturthi festival, which begin from Thursday.

Police officials claimed that adequate safety and security arrangements are in place and that the department has banned leave for its personnel.

According to information, several nakabandi points have been identified and police will be patrolling the localities round the clock. In North Goa, in addition to the existing police personnel, around 400 additional police personnel have been sourced from the Goa Reserve Police, Indian Reserve Battalion and also the new recruits undergoing training at Valpoi.

“In North Goa, the strength of police personnel is around 1200 and in addition to it, more 400 police personnel have been sourced from other police divisions for deployment during the festival. Various points and areas have been identified in North Goa where round-the-clock patrolling and nakabandi will be carried out,” North Goa SP Umesh Gaonkar said.

According to information, there are around 72 sarvajanik ganeshotsav mandals and instructions have been already issued to the organisers with regard to safety and security measures that need to be adopted.

“The structural stability of the pandals, fire and electricity safety has to be conducted by the concerned departments. An armed police guard will be deployed at the Sarvajanik Ganesh venue. The organisers have been urged to install CCTV cameras and various other measures have also been recommended in view of safety and security,” said Gaonkar.

South Goa Superintendent of Police Shekhar Prabhudessai said 175 Indian Reserve Battalion (IRB) personnel will be posted in different parts of the district as a part of the security arrangement for the  Ganesh Chaturthi festival. Besides, armed policemen will also be on duty at various places in the district.

Prabhudessai said that police stations have made elaborate arrangements at all places. He said that he has directed the police stations to conduct nakabandis at various places during the festival period. The SP said that 250 police recruits will be posted at venues of sarvajanik Ganesh mandals. Besides, local police station staff including officers will also keep a watch on the activities at the pandals. He said that the night and day patrolling will also be intensified during the festival days.

Seeking cooperation from the people during the drive, the SP said that directions have been issued to the police stations to thoroughly check vehicles and interrogate strangers at the nakabandi points. Housing societies in Margao and other parts of the district have been directed to be on the alert and use CCTVs. Officers of police stations along with staff will visit localities under their jurisdiction and identify houses, which would remain closed during the festivities. According the Prabhudessai, police will keep a round-the-

clock watch on such houses in order to avoid break-ins and other incidents.


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