The decision was taken in the wake of the recent serial blasts. Four low-intensity blasts on Jangali Maharaj Road on August 1 had disrupted day-to-day life in the city. Traffic officials have decided to use schools and college grounds and other open spaces as temporary parking lots.
“As terror threat looms large over the city constantly and keeping in mind the recent blasts on JM Road on August 1, we have decided to take extra precautions.
As a safety measure, we have decided to install CCTV cameras at the temporary parking lots created on Laxmi Road, Shivaji Road, Bajirao Road, Kumthekar Road and other busy roads in peth areas,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Vishwas Pandhare said.
Pandhare said devotees will be requested to use these areas rather than opting for roadside parking, which causes unwanted traffic jams.
“We have also contacted PMPML and MSRTC and requested them to co-operate with us during the 11 days of the festival. The division’s plan of traffic diversion in core areas of the city has been communicated to them,” Pandhare said.
To ensure an incident-free festival, police officials in the city were instructed to take preventive action against anti-social elements.
“We have started taking action against history-sheeters and also externed some of the goons from the city till the end of the festival season,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone I) Makarand Ranade said yesterday.
In addition, a contingent of 9,500 police personnel has been deployed in the city to avert untoward incidents. “About 5,000 NSS students have extended their support to us and will be posted at several points in the city,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (Special Branch) Rajendra Mane said.
The Traffic police officials have cordoned off the entire Shivaji Road, from Jijamata Chowk to Rameshwar Chowk for PMPML buses and four-wheelers till the festival ends.
The closure was introduced as the stretch has several small and big Ganesh mandals, including Dagadusheth Halvai Ganpati Mandal.
Commuters can use JM Road, Tilak Road and Shashtri Road instead.
Precautions taken by Traffic police
>> All Ganesh mandals and commercial establishments, including shops, malls and restaurants, have been instructed to install CCTV cameras on their premises
>> Mandals have been asked to deploy a squad of volunteers to keep an eye on suspicious individuals
>> All the two-wheelers, three-wheelers and four-wheelers will be checked at various points in the city
>> Nakabandi at major roads in the city
>> Appeals to citizens, devotees and mandal volunteers not to touch any suspicious object, as it can be a bomb or an explosive
9,000 Number of police personnel deployed in the city
500 Number of NSS students who have volunteered to help the Traffic police department
21 Number of temporary parking lots created by Traffic police department in various peths