September 27, 2014
Kolkata Police ready for crowd control during Durga Puja
Crowd and traffic control during Durga Puja in the added areas of Kolkata – where there’s been a phenomenal rise in number of mega-budget pujas – is turning into a bigger challenge every year for Kolkata Police.
Deployment of forces
As many as 4,000 personnel will be posted across the city along with home guards. Traffic will be barred on many roads from 3 PM to 1 AM on Panchami and up to 3 AM till Navami. Kolkata Police has also drawn up specific traffic regulations on 133 streets.
A few hundred constables and over 450 trainee traffic sergeants will be the additional forces on the road on all Puja days. “Most of the divisions and the traffic wing have increased their staff strength. This extra force will be deployed in the added areas where roadspace is restricted. In addition, we are hopeful of taking the number of CCTV cameras to 615 to cover all the major crossings of the added areas. Based onreal time inputs, we will make the necessary deployments,” said DC-Traffic V Solomon N Kumar.
Newly-added areas under Kolkata Police
The added areas spread over 104 sq km and include 13 police stations. Unlike other years, this time the full police bandobast will begin on Panchami itself.
“Each police station will have eight to 10 sub-inspectors plus a lady SI – five more than the previous set-up – plus 10 ASIs and nearly 60 constables,” said an officer. There are at least 28 big pujas in this new area and over 1,000 medium-scale pujas. Additional manpower has been sought from the state police but top officers have been asked to prepare their plan with existing resources.
NCC cadets, scouts, students and several NGOs will be used for managing crowds at pandals, said sources. Like last year,information regarding traffic, the situation at pandals and those lost in crowd will be transmitted on the AIR FM channel.