Tribune News Service
Shambhu/Kapuri, Ambala, February 23
A huge posse of personnel was deployed and barricades were put up at the main entry points from Haryana from where the INLD workers are expected to enter Punjab to dig the Sutlej-Yamuna Link canal.
Police personnel were deployed in large numbers at Shambu toll barrier and Sarala headworks at the border with Haryana.
The barricading at Shambu toll barrier is just 2 km from the new vegetable market in Ambala where the INLD is scheduled to hold ‘Jal Yudh Sammelan’ before their senior leader Abhay Singh Chautala leads a march towards Kapuri in Patiala to dig the SYL canal.
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Arrangements have been made to divert traffic at many places in view of the march.
Ten companies of paramilitary forces and nearly 5,000 policemen have been deployed by Punjab near villages along the border with Haryana, officials said.
With the police of the two states working in tandem to tackle the situation, the roads have been barricaded and walls raised at the Shambhu border.
Section 144 of the CrPC, prohibiting the assembly of five or more persons, has also been imposed and five duty magistrates have been stationed in the area.
A senior Punjab Police official said aerial surveillance will also be conducted to keep an eye on the situation.
Punjab Police has also decided not to allow the workers of All-India Sikh Students Federation, which announced to stop INLD workers from entering Punjab, to reach Kapuri or the Shambu border.
Punjab DGP (Law and Order) HS Dhillon said no one would be allowed to disturb the peace and take the law into their hands.
Police personnel, drawn from neighbouring districts, 10 companies of paramilitary, riot police and a mounted battalion, were deployed along the Shambu border, about 30 km from here.
Haryana DGP KP Singh, ADGP RC Mishra and senior administration and police officers visited the Punjab-Haryana border to take stock of the situation.
Mishra said nearly 1,000 personnel of the state police are monitoring situation in Ambala City and on the NH-1.
Punjab DGP Suresh Arora had earlier visited Shambu village and had assessed the situation ahead of the INLD’s march.
“All possible measures have been taken. Forces are ready to tackle any situation,” said Punjab’s DGP Suresh Arora.
At the Ambala rally, the INLD held Capt Amarinder Singh, the Congress and BJP responsible for the situation. The party wanted Capt Amarinder Singh to apologise to Haryanvis for stopping their water from flowing into Haryana.
Party leader Ashok Arora said they were not seeking alms as water was their right. Singer Karaveer Fauji sang a song especially composed for the march.
INLD workers start march
INLD workers were allowed to cross the first line of defence without any resistance by Haryana Police.
They have started their march towards Punjab. Punjab Police tell its personnel to be ready.
As the workers crossed the first line of defence, Haryana Police were ready with chilli powder and teargas to dissuade the marchers.
INLD workers carrying spades were about a kilometre away from the chilli spray gun.
Haryana Police announced that the Supreme Court orders to maintain law and order were in force and it requested INLD workers not to march further.
The administration said the permission was only for the rally and not the march to Punjab, so they should not violate conditions. Duty Magistrate said Section 144 of the CrPC was not imposed.