Kanwariyas using interior border roads to sneak into Uttarakhand to get Ganga waters

With borders sealed following the cancellation of this year’s Kanwar yatra, there has been a rise in the number of people from other states, especially Kanwariyas, trying to enter Haridwar district illegally using interior border roads, said officials.

Local villagers and officials pointed out that instead of using the main highway, they are using interior roads in Bhagwanpur, Laldhang and Narsain areas to escape checking.

District administration officials said more than one thousand vehicles on an average are being sent back from the Uttarakhand border daily. These are from other states and have no legal permission to enter the state.

Many who have succeeded in sneaking into the state have been quarantined. So far, sixteen people hailing from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi have been quarantined for fourteen days at Maheshwari ashram in Haridwar under police vigil.

Also read: Eight-month-old tests positive for Covid-19 in Uttarakhand, state tally rises to 3,373

To ensure total adherence of prohibition on entry of Kanwariyas in the state, the administration has started deploying police personnel at the interior and arterial routes on border areas.

According to Shyampur station house officer Deepak Kathait, additional force has been deployed at sensitive border posts and entry points along the interior stretches of the district.

“We are carrying out round the clock checking at various border posts for people on vehicles as well as on foot who try to sneak into the state. Many times, people resist but when we tell them that they can’t enter the state as Kanwar yatra has been cancelled, they agree to return, “said Kathait.

Local intelligence unit personnel and villagers have brought to light how people from UP, Haryana, Delhi, Punjab are deceiving the police by skipping highway routes where checking is being done and are using narrow-temporary routes that pass through forest and riverbeds.

Taking cognizance of this, the police administration has deployed additional security personnel at such rural arterial routes through which other state people were trying to reach Haridwar.

The police have also deployed personnel at Sirchandi, Badedi, Hasanpur villages that lie on the border with Uttar Pradesh.

The whole district has been bifurcated into 10 zones and 21 sectors to ensure better management and monitoring of security aspects till Kanwar yatra period ends. Superintendent of Police (city) Kamlesh Upadhyay has been appointed as Kanwar nodal officer for the period.

“Police, along with PAC personnel, are monitoring the situation round the clock and carrying out checking drives to ensure no person enters the state illegally. Police deployment has also been done at all such connecting stretches that can be used to illegally enter the district,” said Superintendent of Police (rural) SK Singh.

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