Elaborate security is in place in Ahmedabad ahead of the annual Lord Jagannath Rath Yatra, especially as it could clash with Eid this year.
"Nothing has been announced, but we have readied a blueprint on July 6 and 7, in case the end of Ramzan is announced on the same day or the next," state Additional DGP (Law and Order) V M Parigi told the media on Monday.
Nearly 150 rath yatras are held in Gujarat to mark "Ashadhi Bij". A hundred of them are Lord Jagannath yatra, while other yatras are organized around different deities. Ahmedabad Jagannath yatra is considered next only to the similar event held in Puri.
The police turned the yatra's route into a virtual fortress since it passes through several communally sensitive areas in the city. The state government has announced deployment of 28 companies of para-military forces, 27 state reserve force companies, besides special police teams from Assam and Nagaland.
While all the major cities in the state – Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot and Bhavnagar will witness Lord Jagannath Rath Yatra on Wednesday, seven processions are scheduled on Tuesday at Anand, Nadiad, Mahudha, Dakor, Khambhat and Bhadaran in Central Gujarat.
"For a couple of years, we used drones to monitor the situation real-time, but this time, we have mapped out the procession routes in all major cities using drones for recon," Parigi said.
In all, state administration would deploy over 6000 personnel from Gujarat police for rath yatras and Ramzan Eid festivals. "Two IGs, two DIGs, 22 SPs, 73 DySPs, 206 PIs, 233 PSIs and 245 other junior level police personnel have been deployed to maintain law and order situation," the Additional DGP said.
"We hope the event passes off peacefully," he added.


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