Hazaribagh (Jharkhand): Tension has gripped Jharkhand’s Hazaribagh district as the administration issued directives for Ram Navami celebrations in the state, ahead of the festival. This comes close on the heels of the unrest and violence that hit the state’s Palamu district before Shivratri due to the installation of an entry gate in front of a mosque, media reports said.
Jharkhand's Hazaribagh district administration has put a ban on recorded music during the Ram Navami processions and prohibited traditional plays with sticks and bamboo. They have also banned acrobatic shows and the display of weapons.
Ram Navami is an important festival in Hazaribagh and is observed with traditional gaiety and enthusiasm. The celebration starts a month before the festival, and a procession is held every Tuesday until Ram Navami sets in.
The directive by the authorities has upset the organisers of akhadas in the town. They demonstrated against the orders on March 14, after which a First Information Report (FIR) was filed against 209 protesters at the Sadar Police Station in Hazaribagh.
Over 3,000 cops have been deployed and CCTVs have been installed in Hazaribagh to maintain law and order during the celebrations that started with the first ‘Mangla Julus’ last Tuesday, police said.
The directives issued by the police have been also criticised by the BJP and the Congress leaders.
However, Hazaribag’s Superintendent of Police told India Today that the administration hasn’t initiated any step on its own. "It has just asked the people to abide by the standard operating procedure (SOP) of the Supreme Court and the High Court," the top police official said.
"The SOP is clear that no DJ would be allowed after 10 pm. No arms or weapons are permitted during the procession. Display of arms' skills and recorded songs have been prohibited to maintain law and order in the city,” the SP added.
FIRs were lodged against those who were protesting against the directives of the court.