KOLKATA SAW a quieter Diwali this year thanks to strict vigil by the police. While 800 people were arrested on Sunday, mostly for bursting noisy crackers, a day before when the state celebrated Kali Puja, 717 people were held. According to official records, while 221 complaints were received by Kolkata Police on Diwali, on Saturday, the figure was 96.
Among the 221 complaints, while 186 related to bursting of noisy crackers, 35 were for playing loudspeakers beyond the stipulated hour. Most complaints were received from the South Division of the city, including Park Street, Shakespeare Sarani, Alipore, Hastings, Maidan, Bhawanipore, Kalighat, Tollygunge, Lake, Garfa, Alipore, Behala, New Alipore, Karaya and Chetla.
Under this division, 146 people were arrested on Sunday. As many as 87 of them were booked for bursting noisy crackers and 59 for disorderly conduct.
South Division was followed by the Central Division, comprising areas like Girish Park, M G Road and Burrabazar.
“Overall, 284 kg of crackers were seized on Sunday and 387 kg on Saturday,” said a police officer.
A resident of Alipore, on condition of anonymity, said: “A loudspeaker was blaring music in my locality beyond the permissible limit around midnight. I called the police but felt since it’s Diwali, my complaint won’t be taken seriously. But to my surprise, within 10 minutes of me calling the police, a team arrived at the spot.”
In Gariahat, one Basudeb Ghosh lodged a complaint with the police against a local club, Netaji Sangha, for allegedly playing loudspeaker in violation of laws.
Sources said when Ghosh asked the club members to switch off the loudspeaker, they threatened him and broke the window panes of his house.
When asked, Netaji Sangha denied all allegations. “It was a small argument. But none of the club members attacked his house,” said a member.
Police said they are probing the matter.