The Mumbai Police are on "high alert" and have put in place "anti-sabotage and anti-terror" measures considering the threat to the financial capital during the New Year celebrations, an official said on Thursday. Around 35,000 police personnel will be deployed on the streets of Mumbai to maintain law and order and prevent any untoward incidents on New Year's Eve, the official said.
"We are on high alert. We have put in place anti- terror and anti-sabotage measures in view of the New Year celebrations," Mumbai police spokesperson DCP S Chaitanya said. "There will be adequate deployment of police in the city. Nakabandi (road blockades) will be put in place on important roads," he said.
The Maharashtra government has put in place a night curfew between 11 pm and 6 am, prohibiting gathering of five or more persons in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. "Gatherings of more than five persons are not allowed at public places. Party will not be allowed at any hotel, bar, pubs, restaurants after 11 pm," he said.
Besides, no boat party or terrace party will be allowed in the city after the prescribed time, Chaitanya said, adding that strong action will be taken against the violators of prohibitory order issued under section 144 of the CrPC. "Apart from the police, personnel of the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) and home guards will also be engaged in maintaining law and order in the city," he said, adding that special branches like the crime branch and Anti Narcotics Cell (ANC) will also on the job.
"Drones will be used to a keep vigil and CCTV cameras have been installed at various points," he said. Large gatherings will not be allowed anywhere in Mumbai in view of COVID-19 and use of face masks and social distancing norm will remain mandatory, he said.
"Traffic police personnel will also on the road and will take action against the people, if they are found indulging in rash and drunken driving. Breath analysers will not be used this year due to the pandemic, but blood tests of such drivers will be conducted and action will be taken against them if found guilty," Chaitanya said.
Meanwhile, the city police appealed to Mumbaikars to celebrate the New Year at home in view of COVID-19. "A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z Ghar Pe Raho! Sing along the safety song," the Mumbai Police said on the Twitter handle.