‘Chakka Jam’ has begun across India and will continue till 3pm as protesters sit on roads and block traffic. At some places, like Bengaluru and Pune, the demonstrators have been detained to avoid any untoward incident. Delhi authorities have shut Mandi House, ITO, Delhi Gate and Khan Market metro station.
Bharatiya Kisan Union leader Rakesh Tikait said that they have evidence that few people would attempt to spread violence at certain place. “So we have decided to not block roads in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand. There will be no road block programme inside Delhi since all the protest sites are already in a chakka jam mode,” he further said, adding that farmers have been “kept on standby as they can be called to the national capital any time”. Not taking the promises at face value, Delhi police had geared up for a law and order challenge in order to avoid a repeat of the violence on Republic Day. According to a Times of India report, over 50,000 personnel, drawn from Delhi Police, reserve police forces and paramilitary, will be deployed at various points, including the border. Several companies of ITBP, CRPF and RAF will be out for maintaining law and order.
Special Cell’s SWAT teams and NSG have been kept on standby to be moved at a short notice in case of an emergency. Bomb and dog squads have been stationed at multiple places in the capital as well.
Extra vigil will be maintained at markets and places of religious and historic significance with focus on places like Red Fort, India Gate and the routes leading to Parliament. Kaccha roads which provide easy access to the city will be under watch as well. Thousands of CCTV cameras will be monitored from the central C4i control room and other sub-control rooms formed at the four borders and at other strategic places. The police are officially maintaining that use of force will be minimal and resorted to only in extreme circumstances, but if violence breaks out, they will prevent escalation at all costs. Intelligence inputs suggest that anti-social elements may try to disrupt law and order and the police are taking this seriously.
The report further stated that extra barricading has been installed at critical points like Kalindi Kunj, Akshardham, Naraina and Narela due to which traffic jams were being reported on Friday. The cops fear that the sympathisers and supporters of the farmers may try to enforce the chakka jam within the city.
On Friday morning, Delhi Police commissioner SN Shrivastava held a meeting with senior police officers and reviewed security arrangements. Shrivastava, on Thursday, had attended a meeting chaired by Union home minister Amit Shah at the Parliament complex to review the security situation in Delhi-NCR ahead of the chakka jam. National security advisor Ajit Doval was also present at that meeting.
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