Free Press Journal

Security stepped up for ‘Godavari Pushkarams’ in AP


Hyderabad: In view of the ‘Godavari Pushkarams’, Andhra Pradesh police today said they have made elaborate security arrangements in all Pushkaram areas including an aerial surveillance through drones. The 12-day-long ‘Godavari Pushkarams’ will be held along the banks of river Godavari from July 14 to July 25.

During this period, 3 to 4 crore pilgrims from across the country are expected to visit ‘Godavari Pushakarams’ mainly at Rajahmundry, Kovvur, Devipatnam and Kunavaram in East and West Godavari districts. The Andhra Pradesh Police has categorised the entire ‘bandobust’ in six zones–traffic, ghat ‘bandobust’, law and order ‘bandobust’, security and communications, temple ‘bandobust’ and logistics.

‘Godavari Pushkarams’ is a festival of river Godavari which occurs once in 12 years. ‘Bandobust’ in each zone will be headed by a Superintendent of Police/ Additional SP rank officer. Each zone has been divided into a total of 39 sectors which in turn will be headed by Additional SP/DSP.

“The elaborate bandobust police arrangements are made at all the places to avoid any untoward incidents and to prevent stampedes, property offences, road accidents/ traffic jams, prevent foray to deep water besides providing security to the pilgrims and temples,” an official release from AP police said.

Dedicated anti-sabotage checking squads, bomb disposal squads, dog squads are being deployed as part of anti-sabotage checks. Besides, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams will also be deployed for emergency response to any situation that may arise, it said.

There are 258 ghats and elaborate barricading with compartments to prevent any stampede and expert divers and swimmers are being deployed along the ghats. Apart from static surveillance through 248 CCTV cameras with IR facility, aerial surveillance would also be maintained through drones.

Drones would be deployed at important ghats and the live feed would be transmitted to the master command and control centre along with the sub-control. Deliberations are on for the deployment of Aerostats (Aerial balloons fitted with cameras).