R-Day: Chennai under security blanket; 5,000 personnel at Marina alone

Tight security is being maintained at important places in the city ahead of Republic Day.

Chennai: For the past one week, the city police have been on high alert for Republic Day celebrations. And the height of it will be witnessed today and tomorrow.

Around 20,000 personnel have been posted across the city for security and 5,000 of them will take care of Marina alone, where VVIPs will attend Republic Day celebrations.

A highly placed source said, “From tonight police will begin checking vehicles. There will be checks at lodges and hotels to find out any suspicious activity.”

“For tomorrow, important routes are chalked out for dignitaries to travel and policemen will be deployed along these stretches to prevent untoward incidents.”

For security reasons, visitors will not be allowed inside the airport. Governor Banwarilal Purohit will hoist the flag
and he will be joined by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and other top officials. Parade and cultural activities have been planned at Marina beach. Around 60,000 people are expected to attend the function. A number of metal detectors are kept at check points to screen the visitors.

Traffic police will be barricading certain routes to avoid hassles. Like last year, traffic restrictions will be imposed on roads such as Kamaraj Salai and Walajah Road.

An inspector of police said, “City police are on full alert. At commercial places such as T Nagar, Broadway and Koyambedu, police teams will be on vigil from today. We are going all out to carry out random searches based on the alert.”

GOVERNOR GREETS

Governor Banwarilal Purohit today conveyed Republic Day greetings to people. He said in his message: “I extend my heartiest greetings and best wishes to the people of Tamilnadu on the joyous occasion of the 69th anniversary of the Republic Day.”

He said further: “The Republic Day is an occasion for formal observance by the nation to honour the day on which the constitution of India came into effect. The day reminds us that essence of our democracy lies in the understanding that the common people are the masters of the nation.”

The Governor added: “Let us all on this occasion take a pledge to develop our nation to the maximum extent utilising our resources optimally and in a manner that is guided by technology, fuelled by sincerity and driven by concern
for the common people. May the spirit of our Constitution fill the air and devotion to the nation be the life breath that sustains and inspires us.”

In his greeting message, the Prince of Arcot, Nawab Mohammed Abdul Ali, appealed to fellow citizens to at least now stand shoulder to shoulder, irrespective of caste, creed or religion and fight the divisive forces, which are tearing apart the very basic fabric of our great secular country, India, which is threatening the communal peace and harmony.

NT Bureau