Bengaluru say no to public celebrations to welcome 2021

Bengaluru: The new year festivities in Bengaluru will be lacklustre this year following the prohibitory orders imposed by the city police to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and its new variant.

Chennai will also see virtually no public celebrations as the government has already banned such festivities in restaurants, hotels, clubs and resorts, including beach resorts, on Thursday and Friday.

The Bengaluru police have imposed prohibitory orders under section 144 of the CrPC from 6 pm on Thursday to 6 am Friday.

The city is known for its grand gala celebrations during the New Year and the major hub of activities used to be MG Road, Church Street, Brigade Road, Koramangala and Indiranagar.

Now, according to the order passed by the Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Pant, these places are “No-Man Zones.”

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To prevent the unnecessary travelling in the night, the police closed major flyovers for traffic.

Major signals and junctions have also been barricaded to regulate traffic across the city.

In Chennai, the popular Marina beach which is a famed destination of new year revellers is out of bounds for any kind of celebrations and police have banned entry for the people.

However, neighbouring Puducherry has allowed public celebrations to welcome 2021, with Chief Minister V Narayansamy reasoning that it was in lines with the French culture of the union territory.

The move has not gone down well with Lt Governor Kiran Bedi, often at loggerheads with Narayansamy over many matters, who has questioned the latest move and even appealed to people to herald 2021 from their homes and avoid becoming super-spreaders of coronavirus by gathering in public places.

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With the spike in COVID-19 cases continuing in Kerala, the new year eve celebrations on Thursday night are likely to be low key as the government has imposed restrictions saying it should come to a close by 10 pm and public gatherings should be avoided.

Drones would be used to track any violations, state Police chief Loknath Behera said, adding action would also be initiated against those indulging in noisy celebrations. 

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