New Year’s Eve: Calcutta HC directs govt. to issue guidelines

Dec 30, 2020 #Calcutta High Court #New Year
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Sameeksha Dubey

The bench gave directions to the Chief Secretary and the Home Secretary regarding the management of overcrowding to be taken place on New Year’s Eve.

The direction to the government was by a division bench of Justice Moushumi Bhattacharya and Justice Kaushik Chand.

The High Court issued the order on December 29, 2020.

The Court issued guidelines and directed the state government and the Police to strictly follow them on the eve. The large gathering must be prevented at any cost to regulate the infection rate of Coronavirus.

The judges told the police to enquire about the areas where the larger crowds are possible and make a proper arrangement for the distribution of masks as well as the availability of sanitizers at the check-posts.

The sources from police informed about the order of HC and decided to change the strategy which followed the unexpected large gathering in Christmas at Park Street and Alipore Zoo.

The police presence was double at the place mentioned on a particular day.

The department of police of Kolkata has decided to revisit the New Year’s Eve plan and bring about the necessary changes according to the requirements.

An officer said, ” We may have to re-arrange the force after going through the order. There could be multiple channels to regulate pedestrians who are expected to converge on Park Street in large number on the eve of New Year.”

The diversion of the traffic will be regulated by the Traffic Police whenever required at Park Street. A proper place has been marked at the place to manage the parking of cars or apps cab on New Year’s Eve.

One of the Officers has said, “It is a long weekend. We might have to deploy close to 12,000 men on the roads of Kolkata. The security set up is likely to remain unchanged but the social distancing management will be challenging for the police present at the Park Street.”

The police have planned to prosecute the people for not using masks and to deploy such people but they are aware of their tasks. The traffic police will also look after drunken driving and will extend to new party hotspots instead of confining themselves to a place we have already mentioned.

These places include Ballygunge, Deshapriya Park, Purna Das road, and Sarat Bose road.

An IPS officer said, “The raids since December 20 show drink driving is not confined to a few sports. There are reports of rave parties being organized. Our teams are on the lookout. We will carry our block raids right from the late evening till early morning in at least 50 places.”

Similar actions were taken on the eve of Durga puja, Diwali, Kali puja, and Chhat puja. The matter of New Year was brought to the court’s attention last week.

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