ISLAMABAD: As many as 2,200 officials of capital police have been deployed for security during Chehlum processions to be taken out on Monday (today) whereas the City Traffic Police have devised an alternative traffic plan to facilitate the public during Chehlum of Imam Husain in Rawalpindi on Tuesday.
No one would be allowed to stand on rooftops of commercial and residential buildings situated along the procession route. Police officers will visit the routes and ensure effective coordination among security personnel. Special checking of routes would be carried out before start of the procession whereas mourners would be checked with metal detectors and will pass through walk-through gates installed at entry points.
According to a statement, a meeting, presided over by Senior Superintendent of Police (Operations) Dr Syed Mustafa Tanweer, was held at Rescue-15 to review the security arrangements.
During the meeting, the SSP Operations said heavy contingents of Islamabad police and Rangers as well as personnel of other law enforcement agencies will perform patrolling and security duties. The main procession would be taken out from Imambargah Asna-i-Ashri, G-6/2, and will be completely cordoned off.
Alternative traffic plans devised for road users
Mr Tanweer said the procession would be monitored through safe city cameras, smart cars, surveillance and drone cameras while DG (safe city) would supervise the process.
On the other hand, 200 traffic policemen would perform duties during the procession to ensure smooth flow of traffic in the city. The plan has been finalised by Senior Superintendent of Police (Traffic) Syed Karar Hussain.
Traffic would be diverted on alternative routes from 8am till culmination of the procession while Islamabad Traffic Police’s (ITP) FM Radio 92.4 would keep on updating road users.
During the procession, Fazl-i-Haq Road from Kalsoom Plaza and China Chowk will remain closed for traffic and citizens can use Jinnah Avenue. Likewise, 7th Avenue heading to Chandtara Chowk will remain closed from Blue Area till Chowk Suharwardi. People can travel on the alternative route from Nazimuddin Road to Khayaban-i-Suharwardi and Faisal Avenue.
Similarly, 7th Avenue from Suhrawardi to G-7/4, Service Road, Iqbal Hall, Post Office Service Road will remain closed and Jinnah Avenue may be used from Fazl-i-Haq Road. Saddar Road from Iqbal Hall to Melody Chowk will be inaccessible and road users may use alternative route of Aabpara Suharwardi Road and Shaheed-i- Millat Road.
Luqman Hakeem Road from Polyclinic to Iqbal Hall will remain closed and the alternative route will be Jinnah Avenue during the route timings.
According to a police spokesman, in Rawalpindi district, 12 processions will be taken out in five rural areas and seven in Rawalpindi city.
As part of the traffic plan, 208 traffic police personnel will perform special duties including five deputy superintendents of police (DSPs), 18 inspectors, 147 traffic wardens and 38 traffic assistants.
He said traffic will be diverted from 12 places during the procession - Liaquat Road (from DAV College Chowk to Fawara Chowk will remain closed), City Saddar Road (from East Hotel to Fawara Chowk), Kashmiri Bazaar Road (Novelty Cinema), Fawara Chowk to Ganjmandi Road (from Ganjmandi Turn to Fawara Chowk), Bagh Sardaran Road (from Chowki No 4 to Bansa Nawala Chowk), Banni Chowk (Circular Road, Waris Khan Road, Kohati Bazaar), Iqbal Road (from Committee Chowk to Fawara Chowk), Garden College Road (from Akbar International to New Mohallah), 5th Road (Rehmanabad Turn Murree Road College Chowk to Saidpur Road), 4th Road (Punjab Bank Roundabout to Kali Tanki Chowk) and Asghar Mall Road (Asghar Mall Turn Murree Road to Degree College).
Traffic coming from Dhoke Ratta to Fawara Chowk will be diverted from Novelty Cinema to Mohanpura and towards Machli Mandi Road. Traffic coming from Pirwadhai to Fawara Chowk will be diverted from Chowki No 4 to Asghar Mall Road while traffic coming from Circular Road Turn, Waris Khan and Kohati Bazaar to Banni Chowk will be diverted to Murree Road.
Similarly, traffic coming from Committee Chowk via Iqbal Road to Fawara Chowk will be diverted from Murree Road. Traffic coming from Liaquat Road via China Market, College Road will be diverted from Akbar International Turn to Liaquat Road.
Chehlum processions were brought out on Sunday amid tight security in Attock district.
Foolproof security arrangements were made with policemen deployed on every route to avoid an untoward incident. The main procession was taken out from Imambargah Panjtani, which ended at Imambargah Hussainia Kamalpur Syedan, Attock cantonment in a peaceful manner.
A special mobile medical team from District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital besides Rescue 1122 provided medical treatment to those in need and remained on standby.
— Additional reporting by Amjad Iqbal
Published in Dawn, September 27th, 2021