Vadodara, Sep 25 (UNI) Amid unprecedented police bandobast, thousands of devotees, including women and children, today gathered at the Sursagar lake, the main venue of the immersion, to bid adieu to their beloved elephant-headed God Ganesh marking an end to the 10-day long festival.
In the wake of recent communal violence in the city during immersion processions in which several people, including Police Commissioner P C Thakur, were injured, the authorities had left no stone unturned to maintain peace and harmony.
Though the authorities had earlier issued an order banning use of DJs and loud speakers during immersion processions as a precautionary measure, they decided not to use any force against violation of the order after the pandal organisers, led by local BJP MLA Yogesh Patel, vehemently opposed the decision.
Police sources said no incident of violence was reported from any part of the city so far. About 5000 policemen, including 12 companies of Central and state para-military forces, were deployed in sensitive areas to ensure a peaceful immersion ceremony.
Sources said so far only 50 per cent of the 10,000-odd Ganesh idols had been immersed in the Sursagar lake and it was likely to continue till the early morning tomorrow as intermittent rain affected the immersion. The civic authorities had pressed one dozen cranes around the Sursagar lake, located in the heart of the city, for immersion of the idols.