Delhi Police asks officials to tighten grip on stunt bikers on Shab-e-Barat, Holika Dahan

New Delhi: Delhi Police has asked its officials to take steps to put a tight leash on stunt bikers and keep a vigil in sensitive areas to ensure there is no communal tension during Shab-e-Barat and Holika Dahan, both of which will be observed on the same night this year.

In an advisory issued to all the 15 police districts, the special branch directed them to take the help of religious leaders and local volunteers to prevent stunt biking during the night of March 7-8. It cited past events when young men from areas such as Jafrabad, Seelampur, Welcome, Trilokpuri, Okhla and Jamia Nagar visit India Gate, Connaught Place and other areas in New Delhi district and perform dangerous stunts on two-wheelers and even on three and four wheelers.

In 2019, during the night of Shab-e-Barat, some people had broken mirrors and glasses of vehicles and houses in Dabri, Khajoori Khas and Janakpuri, leading to the registration of cases, the advisory said.

“In order to prevent stunts, bikers (from) coming to the New Delhi area, religious leaders should be roped in to appeal to the masses in this regard as was done in the past,” said the advisory seen by PTI.

The junior staff have been asked to immediately brief their seniors on incidents that may have a potential bearing on law and order situations, particularly in mixed-population areas. “Watch should be kept on social media and action to be taken against rumour-mongers,” the advisory said.

“All PCR calls concerning different communities should be dealt promptly and firmly as even minor issues should not remain unattended given the sensitive nature of events,” it added. On Shab-e-Barat night, Muslims offer prayers in large numbers in mosques. On Holika Dahan, Hindus light a bonfire after sunset. “Holika Dahan would be celebrated in the evening of March 7 and hence there is every possibility that the devotees of both communities may come on the same route or place at a particular time,” the advisory said.

“The local police should keep watch on the movements of Muslims to avoid any collision with other communities on the eve of Holika Dahan,” it added.

The advisory asked officials to pay special attention to ‘qabristans’ in Kotla, Khureji, Sarojini Park, Shastri Nagar, Narela, Gadaipur and Kadeemi in Hauz Khas village, stating these places had witnessed some incidents in the past. The special branch asked the police districts to deploy adequate personnel, and PCR vehicles at all mosques and qabristans. Local police heads have been asked to keep a close liaison with event organisers.

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