The Rath Yatra procession, since its launch, has only been growing, now at a length of nearly three kilometres, escorted by nearly 20,000 policemen pooled from across Gujarat’s forces, including the paramilitary, like the Rapid Action Force (RAF).
In its petition, the BJP claimed that the “right to protest is recognised as a fundamental right under the constitution” and “assumptions” cannot be the ground to take “arbitrary decision on pretext of reasonable restriction”.
Modifying a single bench order passed Wednesday, which had put the ‘rath yatras’ on hold till January 9, the division bench of Justices Biswanath Somadder and A Mukherjee lifted the injunction and disposed of the BJP’s petition.
This year the Railways has already announced 184 Special Trains to be run in addition to the normal trains scheduled. Extra CCTV cameras would be put in position at crucial points and punctuality of all incoming trains would be monitored.
The yatra covering the walled city, crossing communally sensitive areas of Jamalpur, Kalupur, Shahpur and Dariyapur, remained peaceful. Besides around 3 lakh devotees, 19 elephants, 101 tableaux, 19 bhajan mandalis and 30 akhadas were part of the annual festival.
Keeping in view the huge turnout like every year, security arrangements have been tightened at the ISKCON headquarters located in Nadia district of West Bengal. For the first time, a magnificent Gundicha temple has been constructed at Prabhupad ghat along the Ganga