The government has taken 15 initiatives to ensure security during the celebration of Pohela Boishakh, the first day of Bangla New Year, on April 14.
As many as 20 organizations under the ministries of home, education, public administration, local government, information, foreign affairs, public works, health and information will work to implement the initiatives, said sources at the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Stringent security measures will be taken at major venues including Ramna Botomul, Faculty of Fine Arts and TSC of Dhaka University.
Arrangements of drinking water, car parking, fire extinguishing measures, mobile dustbin will be made in and around the celebration venues. If anybody falls sick the ambulance will be ready to take them to hospital.
There will be plainclothes police to prevent sexual harassment. Apart from this the control rooms of RAB and police will remain open round the clock.
Special security measures will be taken in the diplomatic zone for foreigners living in Dhaka.
Traditional Bengali menus will be served in jails. Cultural programs participated by the inmates will be organized in the prisons.
Firefighters and divers of Fire Service and Civil Defence will be deployed in and around Ramna Park and Rabindra Sarobar in Dhanmondi.
Arrangements of adequate lighting and mobile toilets in celebration venues including Rabindra Sarobar, Suhrawardy Udyan, TSC and Faculty of Fine Arts will be made. There will be several entrances to Ramna Park and Suhrawardy Udyan.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal has held meetings with representatives of the related organizations on providing these arrangements.
Divisional commissioners, police officials of all metropolitan cities across the country, deputy inspector general of police in all divisions, deputy commissioners and superintendents of police will be responsible for ensuring security in programs such as fairs, sports and cultural programs and other events in all districts, upazilas and metropolitan areas, sources at the home ministry said.
An international conference titled SEP South Asia-2018 will be held in Dhaka from April 11-13 and 120 foreign delegates will participate in the event. The delegates will take part in the Mongol Shobhajatra, a procession organized by Faculty of Fine Arts in the morning of Pohela Boishak, home ministry sources said.
Special measures will be taken to ensure their security. The whole area will be under CCTV surveillance.
Earlier, Home Minister Asaduzzaman said all celebratory programs at open spaces in Dhaka should be wrapped up by 5pm.
Rezaul Karim, who works at a private firm in the city, said: “There should not be any timeframe for the celebration of Pohela Boishakh.
“I do not like the order that keeps us confined to home on the pretext of security reasons. If the government can provide security in the day programs, why is it not possible to provide security at night?” he asked.
The home minister said: “There is no threat of sabotage and we hope no untoward incident will take place during the celebration of Bangla New Year. We have asked people to conclude programs by 5pm so that they can return home early and spend time with their families,” said the minister.
This article was first published on banglatribune.com