Millennium Post

Durga Puja, Muharram conclude peacefully

Kolkata: Elaborate arrangements have been made by the police and other state agencies to ensure trouble free immersion of Durga idols without causing any inconvenience to people.
As Durga Puja concludes, even on Ekadashi on Sunday, the cops maintained an eagle's eye as hundreds of pandal-hoppers thronged the popular Puja mandaps amidst heavy police bandobast.
Regardless of the Calcutta High Court order, no organising committee sought permission for idol immersion on Sunday, thereby silencing the BJP and Hindu hardliner outfits who had long been trying to browbeat the TMC government.
Meanwhile, thousands of Muslims took out processions on Sunday braving intermittent rains on the occasion of Muharram which passed off peacefully in the state.
Processions carrying tazias and black flags and beating their chests in ceremonial mourning were taken out both in the metropolis as well as in the districts.
Muslim-dominated areas of Kolkata like Park Circus, Rajabazar, Kolkata Port area including adjoining Kidderpore, Iqbalpur, Mominpur, stretch of Circular Garden Reach Road, Diamond Harbour Road, Hazra Road and Metiabruz witnessed huge processions.
It may be mentioned that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had held coordination meeting with representatives and Durga Puja organisers in the city in August. Senior police officers and top brass of other concerned government agencies were also present there.
Measures were taken to execute the plans properly and it helped in proper management of both crowd and traffic since Chaturthi of Durga Puja.
Starting from deployment of additional policemen at strategic locations for traffic management to extending help to people whenever they face problem either in finding the right direction or getting a taxi to reach their destination was of immense help to the hundreds of pandal-hoppers. Such efforts received much appreciation and also ensured smooth flow of vehicles. There was no congestion either in North or in South Kolkata during the Puja as the police and volunteers made people walk on pavements instead of the main roads.
The police were also on their toes and kept strict watch. The cops arrested a total of 338 persons on different charges during the four days of the Puja with maximum number of arrests happening on Ashtami — 96. Around 6 litres of liquor was also seized from South Sub-urban division of Kolkata Police on the same day.
Similar measures were also witnessed on Dashami to ensure that no untoward incident takes place during the immersion. Additional policemen were deployed at the ghats of River Hooghly.
On Saturday, around 2,220 idols were immersed — mainly comprising household and residential ones. Idols of a few Barowari Pujas were also immersed on Saturday. On Sunday, immersion of only a handful number of idols took place.
Mayor Sovan Chatterjee visited the ghats of River Hooghly on Saturday. He said: "All precautions have been taken to ensure safety and security of people who will come for immersion. All measures have been taken so that the river doesn't get polluted."
He added: "Entire team comprising of concerned officials of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation is working to ensure that commoners do not face any inconvenience."
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