Mumbai Police appeal for peace, warn trouble−makers

Mumbai, Nov 18: Mumbai Police Saturday night appealed to the people to maintain calm in the wake of Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray’s death earlier in the day.

In an appeal, Mumbai Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh said that Shiv Sena activists and other common people from the city and across the state have started pouring in at Thackeray’s residence Matoshri in Bandra east to pay tributes.

“We have made elaborate security arrangements across the city to avoid any untoward incidents. A force of around 20,000 Mumbai police, along with 15 companies of State Reserve Police and three companies of Rapid Action Force have been pressed into action for security duties,” Singh said in the statement.

Besides, all police stations in the city have been placed on high alert and orders have been given to deal sternly with anyone taking undue advantage of the situation, Singh added.

Strict traffic regulations have been enforced for Sunday in entire Mumbai to ensure a smooth final farewell to Thackeray.

Thackeray passed away around 3.30 p.m. Saturday. His body will be taken from Matoshri to Shiv Sena Bhavan in Dadar west at 7 a.m. Sunday and then to Shivaj Park at 10 a.m. It will be kept there for public viewing till evening 5 p.m. The funeral is likely to be held around 6 p.m. at the Shivaji Park Crematorium nearby.

The police have also appealed to people not to believe in rumours, step out only in case of emergencies and help maintain peace and calm in the city in view of the tragedy.

In a related development, almost all the cab unions of autorickshaws and taxis, which went off the roads Saturday evening, shall not ply Sunday.

The city administration has made arrangements for special public services from railway stations to various destinations, including Shivaji Park, to minimize inconvenience to the general public.

All public, private business establishments, hotels, restaurants, malls, multiplexes, entertainment centres, etc. are expected to remain shut even Sunday as a mark of respect to the departed leader.

IANS