Hyderabad under high security for Ganesh immersion


Hyderabad : A thick security blanket has been thrown over Hyderabad for the Ganesh idols immersion processions Sunday, officials said.

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Nearly 30,000 security personnel, including paramilitary forces, have been deployed for the smooth and peaceful conduct of the massive procession through the city and immersion of Ganesh idols in Hussainsagar and other water bodies.

Police have made additional security arrangements in view of the bomb blast at the Delhi High Court Wednesday and the communal violence in Adoni town of Andhra Pradesh’s Kurnool district.

Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy, who visited parts of old city Saturday, said all security measures were in place to maintain peace during the annual procession. She appealed to organisers of the centralised procession and people to cooperate in ensuring peace.

Director General of Police Dinesh Reddy also visited parts of the city Saturday evening to review the arrangements for the immersion of over 50,000 idols, including 40,000 in Hussainsagar alone.

Over one million people are expected to participate in the procession, which brings the city to a grinding halt for the day.

Police have imposed traffic restrictions in most parts of the city for the procession. All flyovers will be closed for vehicular traffic.

The main procession, which starts from Balapur on the outskirts of the city, passes through communally sensitive old city and after covering a distance of about 20 km, reaches Hussainsagar lake in the heart of the city.

Authorities have mobilised dozens of huge cranes at the lake for the immersion while the Tank Bund, Necklace Road, NTR Marg and other areas surrounding the lake have been lit up for the colourful event.

Since communal clashes have broken out during the procession in the past, authorities deploy the entire 10,000-strong city police force and also call police forces from other parts of the state and central paramilitary forces every year to prevent any untoward incident.

“We have made all security arrangements not just along the procession route but also at all sensitive places,” said Hyderabad Police Commissioner A.K. Khan.

As part of the elaborate security arrangements, police have deployed 35 bomb disposal squads, 40 access control teams, deep search mine detectors, under-carriage mirrors, explosive detectors, anti-sabotage teams and 30 sniffer dogs.