Mysuru: With just hours to go for party-hearties of the city to celebrate the arrival of New Year, the Police Department has been making all efforts to ensure people participate in the celebrations without any hassles.
Almost all of the best hotels have plans to usher in the New Year with the three things that the partygoers love the most —clinking glasses, eating to their heart’s content and dancing to blaring music.
The Police have made elaborate arrangements on various routes with special focus on areas where footfall is usually more, like the Mysore Palace premises where a host of events have been lined up.
Nakabandi to check drunk driving will start at 7 pm today and will continue till the early hours of New Year’s Day.
Mysore Palace will be the centre of attraction with many events being lined up to welcome 2018.
The District Administration that has successfully conducted the Mysuru Winter Festival and the Open Street Festival, has decided to make the most of the prevailing festive atmosphere with stellar attractions.
The Palace Flower Show will be open till 12.30 am and the majestic Palace will be illuminated from 7 pm to 8.30 pm.
The famed Karnataka and English Police Band will perform from 11 pm to midnight at the Palace premises. The Palace will again be illuminated at the stroke of midnight till 12.30 am to welcome the New Year.
From 11.55 pm to 12.15 am, soundless cracker display will be held. These fireworks will be launched from three places – the Jayamarthanda Gate and from two sides of the Palace so that the display will be spectacular. A team of six persons will coordinate the fireworks display and according to Palace Board officials, it will be a coordinated grand display which can even be witnessed from the parking place of Karnataka Exhibition Grounds in the backdrop of the Palace.
There will be a big screen that will be switched on at 11.30 pm to count the seconds as the New Year arrives. Two LED screens will be set up at the Palace Premises for the people to watch the fireworks display.
The District Excise Department has recorded a sale of 21,957 liquor boxes yesterday including Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) and beer. Each box contains 8.65 litres of liquor. The boxes have been lifted from Karnataka State Beverages Corporation warehouses at Hebbal, Bannimantap and at Hunsur. On a normal day, over 8,000 to 10,000 boxes are picked up from the warehouses.
Liquor sale has seen a sharp increase due to weekend and the arrival of New Year and by today evening, the department is expected to record a sale of more than 25,000 boxes, Deputy Commissioner (Excise) M. Roopa told Star of Mysore. There are over 465 liquor selling licence holders in the district including wine stores, CL-2 and CL-7, clubs and resorts, she added.
STRICT POLICE VIGIL
To prevent accidents during the celebrations, the Police have decided to keep a strict eye on drunk drivers. There will be special check posts across the city to catch recalcitrant drivers.
The Police Control Room at the Commissioner’s office will monitor all the 44 CCTV cameras installed at various junctions and over 25 Policemen will wear body-cameras and record the happenings. DCPs, ACPs, Inspectors, Sub-Inspectors and the constabulary have been asked to be on duty from 7 pm today till the morning of January 1, said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime and Traffic) Dr. Vikram V. Amathe.
Vehicle entry to Chamundi Hill has been banned from 9 pm and all the entry gates will be sealed by the Police with barricades. Only the vehicles belonging to the residents of Chamundi Hill will be permitted.
This year, the Police have also asked all city hotels and pubs to install CCTV cameras both within and outside the premises, note down the name and contact details of all guests who are part of the celebrations.
The Traffic Police have also appealed to bar owners and managers to discourage patrons who have consumed more than what is permitted under the Motor Vehicles Act from driving. They have been asked to arrange for taxis and drivers in such situation.
In coordination with local Police and PCR, special pickets will be placed at vulnerable locations to curb stunts by motorcycle riders, over-speeding, reckless driving, zigzag and dangerous driving.
Over 16.60 lakh traffic violation cases have been booked in 2017 and the Police have collected a fine amount of Rs. 8.31 crore (See box for other data).