Over 30,000 personnel with various government security agencies will be enforcing bandobast on the streets of Mumbai this Ganeshotsav,which begins September 9. The police have identified 200 places in the city where overcrowding was observed over the past few years and 52 of these spots have been designated as particularly sensitive with regard to law and order situations.
Police said there are over 6,000 Ganesh mandals in the city as well as more than one lakh households in the city where Ganesh idols will be brought.
Apart from more than 25,000 Mumbai Police personnel 18 companies from various paramilitary agencies such as the State Reserve Police Force,Central Reserve Police Force and the Rapid Action Force have also been roped in.
Apart from our personnel,we have 100 officers,2,800 staff,2,500 Home Guards and 500 personnel from Civil Defense enforcing bandobast in Mumbai for Ganshotsav. All leaves,except medical leave,have been cancelled for the duration of the festival. We appeal to Mumbaikars to keep their eyes and ears open and assist us, said JCP (Law & order) Sadanand Date.
The police have also set up a special helpline number this year 22633333. Areas in the vicinity of Ganeshotsav pandals have been designated as no parking zones for the duration of the festival with the issue of vehicle-borne threats in mind. Policemen will also be mingling in the crowd in plainclothes to keep an eye out for people trying to cash in on the opportunity presented by heavy crowds to eve tease or molest women.
The traffic police have also made arrangements to deal with the heavy traffic on the days of immersion,with focus on popular immersion spots such as the seafaces at Girgaum,Dadar and Juhu. Many people prefer to come to immersion spots in their own vehicles. We will be trying to get them to stay in line instead of driving up to the same place all at once and alighting,which usually leads to traffic snarls. Personnel with handheld megaphones will be placed at immersion spots to instruct people about the same, said JCP (traffic) Vivek Phansalkar.
Over 3,340 traffic police personnel will be supplemented by volunteers from various organisations as well as ham radio operators for better communication. The traffic police has closed 50 roads to traffic,declared 56 roads as one-ways and closed 13 roads for heavy vehicles. The heavy vehicles will be given alternative routes so that the supply of essential commodities is not affected,police said.