Police gear up to handle New Year frenzy in Pune

Crime Branch officials to deploy Quick Response Teams at all sensitive locations; raids planned to catch bootleggers

As Punekars make plans to welcome the New Year on Saturday, police officials will be on their toes keeping a watch at all key points in the city. According to the police, though the state government has not notified any extended deadline for New Year events, the city police will be deploying Quick Response Teams (QRT) at all sensitive locations.

All set: Plainclothes policemen will be deployed across the city to keep 
an eye on trouble-mongers. representation pic

To avoid any untoward incident, the city Crime Branch will reportedly be concentrating only on New Year celebrations in the city in days to come. Police officials said that they are keeping a close watch on the movement of criminals on records and are also conducting checks in city hotels and lodges. 

In the backdrop of preparations for the New Year, Additional Police Commissioner Anant Shinde (Crime) told MiD DAY, "The entire Crime Branch staff will concentrate on New Year celebrations in the city. We are analysing the points where maximum crowding took place last year. Patrolling will be increased in Koregaon Park and Cantonment areas." Shinde added that the police officials have been asked to up security measures at malls, multiplexes and other crowded places.

Specific duties
Sources claim that the crime branch staff will be divided into different squads and will be given specific duties. In this arrangement, some units will be asked to check hotels, while others will be asked to concentrate on vehicles coming in from other states. Shinde said that special squads would be deployed to avoid any incidents of eve-teasing. "We have asked our staff to patrol the city in civil clothes and keep a watch on mischievous elements, who will be apprehended on the spot"

The traffic branch of the city police has already started its drive against drink-driving. At least 547 people have been booked for driving under the influence of alcohol and the traffic branch officials have been given 30 breath analysers. The police will depute officers in civil clothes outside party venues and alert the team carrying breath anyalsers, if they come across incidents of drink-driving. 

Liquor permits for New Year dos
>> Officials at State Excise Department told MiD DAY that so far they have issued 20 one-day permit licences to clubs to serve liquor at New Year's Eve events. DYSP S D Phulpagar said, "A one-day permit is issued at a cost of Rs 8,050. We have, however, asked organisers to ensure that alcohol is served in closed venues." 
>> The State Excise Department will also conduct raids to seize illegally transported liquor or other illicit liquor. According to excise officials, in this month alone at least 30 vehicles have been seized for transporting illicit liquor.

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