Failure on the part of authorities to instal CCTV cameras despite repeated promises,several Ganesh mandals in the city have decided to instal CCTV cameras at their pandals themselves.
Police Commissioner Gulabarao Pol said that last year about 1,500 CCTV cameras were installed at various mandals and that this year the number would go up to 2,000. Apart from the prominent Ganesh mandals such Dagdusheth Ganpati Mandal,Kasba,Tambdi Jogeshwari,Jilbya Maruti,Akhil Mandai Mandal and Babu Genu,several other mandals have volunteered to instal CCTV cameras,said officials.
Adarsh Mitra Mandal at Dhankawadi will have a total of 16 CCTV cameras,some of which will be in collaboration with the local police.
We spent money on four CCTV cameras. For the other 12,Bharati Vidyapeeth University,Dattawadi and Sahkarnagar police have installed four each. These CCTV will be monitored by the police and our own men, said Uday Jagtap of Adarsh Mitra Mandal.
Similarly,Natu Baug Mandal is planning to step up the surveillance this time. Last year we had installed only three cameras. This year we are planning to increase them to five. In additional to those near the idol,we will instal an additional two cameras near the queues of devotees, said a representative of the mandal. Arjun Jangavali,president of Aranyeshwar Mandal,said that the mandal will instal three to four CCTV cameras.
Following the low intensity serial blasts at Jangali Maharaj Road in August 2012,the state government planned to instal CCTV cameras at all arterial roads and squares. However,the plan got stuck in red tapism and no cameras have been installed yet.
Dagdusheth to set up 70 CCTVs
The Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai Sarvajanik Ganapati Trust will instal 65 to 70 CCTV cameras to keep a round-the-clock vigil during the 10-day festival.
The mandal,which attracts the highest number of visitors,with the footfall of devotees running into lakhs, has also received threats and hoax calls about a possible bomb blast. The temple authorities have already installed 55 CCTV cameras inside the permanent structure,where the idol is kept for the rest of the year.
The cameras will cover the road from Lokmanya Tilak Statue at Mandai to Dagdusheth Pandal and from Dagdusheth Pandal to Srinath Theatre. It will also cover the stretch of Shivaji Road from Dagdusheth Pandal to Budhwar Chowk which will allow police to keep an eye on Jogeshwari Temple and Pasodya Vithoba.