Thursday, May 6

Security plan for Park St and beyond

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With party spots being no longer confined to the ever-vibrant Park Street any more, cops have decided to fan out their teams across the city, even to residential neighbourhoods that have grown into eat streets in their own rights, to ensure a trouble-free year-end festivity. To make sure revellers can avail of secure parking spots and can enjoy themselves without being harassed by rogue bikers and drunk motorists, police have drawn up a detailed plan.

Ballygunge, Deshapriya Park, Purna Das Road and Sarat Bose Road areas, where the roads are lined with popular restaurants, Park Circus and stretches of E M Bypass will be under similar security cover as Park Street. Besides detective department cops in plainclothes patrolling the roads, women personnel, from both Winners and Warriors unit, will keep an eye out for those looking for trouble. The force has also marked out specific points around Park Street where people can alight from or board their cars or app cabs on New Year’s Eve and the exercise will be implemented at other popular destinations, too.

Cops will start the day with a watch on the zoo-Victoria-Maidan area before turning their attention to Park Street in the evening. The Maidan area saw massive jams even on Monday, when thousands converged on the hot spots—Indian Museum, zoo, Victoria, planetarium, New Market and Millennium Park. “WBTC has rescheduled bus routes to cover these areas up to January 1. The local police will not only help maintain law and order but also pitch in to ensure seamless pedestrian movements. They will also have to make sure no stampede-like situation takes place, especially at the ticket counters. Those creating trouble will be hauled away immediately,” said a senior cop at Lalbazar, who said they feared jams in the area over the next two mornings.

Park Street will resemble a fortress from 4.30pm, with 13 DCPs patrolling the Park Street-Camac Street-Shakespeare Sarani zone alone. Of the 41 police pickets, 13 will be manned by them. Eighteen special pickets will be operational from 10pm to around 4.30am. What will be new this year is the deployment of crack teams, comprising 30 man and 30 woman commandos and RAF personnel. “The raids since December 20 show drink driving is not confined to a few select spots. There are also reports of rave parties being organized . Our teams are on the lookout for all such elements. We will carry out block raids right from late evening till morning in at least 50 places,” said an IPS officer .

According to the southeast and south suburban police, just like Park Street, the areas adjoining malls and the restaurants will see deployment from Wednesday evening. “The New Year celebrations have begun early this year, with the weekend falling barely a couple of days before 31st. For each stretch, we will have bike-borne strike teams to negate any attempt to commit offence,” said an officer, who is on the Acropolis security team. Those manning eateries and pubs on Sarat Bose Road and Southern Avenue said they would be in contact with the management and bouncers, just like on Park Street. “The bouncers will act as our eyes and ears,” said an officer, adding all CCTV images would have to be preserved for future reference.


Source: Times of India

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