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Sri Sri event: Delhi Police prepares status report; steps up security

A day before the controversy-ridden World Culture Festival kicks off, Delhi Police today prepared a status report and listed several shortcomings in the arrangements for the mega event that is being organised by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living

PTI [ Published on: March 10, 2016 21:07 IST ]
aol world cultural festival
Image Source : PTI aol world cultural festival

New Delhi: A day before the controversy-ridden World Culture Festival kicks off, Delhi Police today prepared a status report and listed several shortcomings in the arrangements for the mega event that is being organised by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's Art of Living foundation.

Security arrangements for the event were heightened today with all 11 police districts and several specialised units roped in amidst an uncertainty regarding the total footfall which the three-day event would witness.

Police are also charting out a traffic plan to make sure that arterial roads in the national capital are not clogged during the event.

Police today again inspected the venue and prepared a status report that was submitted to a Joint Secretary-rank official in charge of supervising the security arrangements, a senior official said.

A lack of direction boards, no fencing on the path leading to the venue, especially from Gates Nos 10, 11, which are to be opened for general public, and inadequate CCTV cameras are some of the shortcomings listed in the status report, the official said, adding these matters have been communicated to the organisers.

The report contains dozens of photographs of the site for the event on the Yamuna floodplains and also highlights the absence of fencing and barricading on the pontoon bridges (floating bridges) constructed there despite several reminders to the organisers, the senior official said.

A meeting chaired by the Special Commissioner of Police (Law & Order) was held at the venue today and security for the event was further stepped up.

Around 6,000 personnel from all 11 districts of Delhi Police and its specialised units like the the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) and Special Cell will be deployed at the World Culture Festival.

A special police control room would also be set up to ensure round-the-clock monitoring.

At least 1,500 officials along with a team of Eagle Commandos will be present at the venue.

Another 500 will be pressed into service in and outside the hotel where the dignitaries, guests and artistes will stay

Specialised units like the Crime Branch, which includes the EOW, and the force's counter-terrorism Special Cell unit have been roped in along with the Intelligence Unit and the Special Branch.

Delhi Police's PM Security Unit is also involved in the process as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other VVIPs are scheduled to visit the event tomorrow.

Earlier this week, Delhi Police received inputs about threats to the event, following which it was decided to further step up the security arrangements.

All arrangements are being closely monitored by the 80,000 -strong force's top brass, the senior official said, adding that quick response teams and Special Weapons & Tactic Teams have also been deployed.

Special Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Muktesh Chander, who is charting out the traffic plan for the event, also visited the venue today to take stock of the arrangements.

"Organisers have made provisions for parking on the Yamuna bank and they have parking labels. The space is limited and, so, parking will be on a first-come-first-served basis," he said.

"People should preferably take public transport to commute and avoid the Noida Link Road, NH-24 and the Ring Road stretch from the point of intersection with Bhairon Marg till the mouth of the DND Flyway," a traffic official said, adding that congestion can be expected on these stretches between 12 noon and 11 PM.

The official further said, those approaching from the trans-Yamuna region towards central Delhi should use the ITO road as Akshardham and NH-24 will be congested.

Commuters from Noida heading towards Delhi should take the DND flyway as traffic on the Noida link road is expected to be heavy during the event, he added.

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