Haridwar: Some of the saints are feeling insecure in spite of full security arrangements in Kumbh. Five major saints, including the President and General Secretary of the Akhil Bhartiya Akhara Parishad, have been provided with Y category security and 26 saints by the government at their own expense. Now many other saints have sought police protection. Amidst the deployment of large number of police forces, para military force, NSG commandos at the fair, the picture is not clear about who is threatening the saints. In February 2020, the Akhara Council President and the General Secretary were announced by the State Government to provide gun class for the Y category security during the Kumbh and 26 representatives of all the 13 Akharas at government expense.
The present council president Shrimhant Narendra Giri, General Secretary Shrimant Harigiri, Juna Akharya Acharya Mahamandaleshwar Swami Awadheshanand Giri, Panchayati Akhri Shree Niranjani’s secretary Shrimant Ravdra Puri, Mahamirvani Akhara secretary Shrimanth Ravdra Puri have got Y category security. Gunners are made available to 26 saints included in the list who reach Haridwar from Prayagraj, Ayodhya, Nashik etc. At the same time, if we talk about the security cordon in the Kumbh Mela, more than five thousand policemen will be stationed on the platform. These include 40 companies of paramilitary forces, commandos of NSG and teams of ATS. Meanwhile, some more saints have demanded security at the fair. So far, more than 10 saints have applied for security at the fair police office. While some saints have also sought protection from the district police. While no saint has received any threat in the recent past.
No such speculation has been expressed by the intelligence department or security agencies. In such a situation, the challenge for the police is who should protect the lives of saints. Although the fair and district police are seriously considering all the applications. Kumbh Mela IG Haridwar Sanjay Gunjyal says that many saints have applied for providing police protection at the fair. Since the fair period will start from April 1, it is not possible to provide security from the fair police at present. The district police has been made aware of such applications. Security will be provided if felt necessary during the fair period. Senior Superintendent of Police, Haridwar Senthil Avudai Krishnaraj S. says that many saints have received applications for security. The District Life Safety Committee will decide on all applications. After which action will be taken as per rules.