Monday, July 05, 2010

Tourists can breathe easy at Lalbagh

Tourists can breathe easy at Lalbagh
TIMES NEWS NETWORK

Bangalore: Visitors, especially foreign nationals, to Lalbagh can heave a sigh of relief, with the horticulture department all set to post five armed private security men from next week. One of the most crowded hang-outs in Bangalore, Lalbagh gets around 5,000 to 7,000 visitors every day, of which 5% are foreigners. During weekends, the crowd ranges from 10,000 to 15,000.
Lalbagh has 60 private security personnel with 20 for each 8-hour shift. There are three shifts per day. Additionally, 10 more guards will be deputed to avoid trouble. At least Rs 1.75 lakh is being spent to maintain security.
“Armed security personnel will be deputed on all four gates and in the park. This was decided because we wanted to ensure unwanted visitors or hawkers don’t enter the park premises. Some visitors climb trees and break branches, pluck flowers, trample upon plants and create other nuisance,” M Jagadeesh, deputy director, horticulture department, told TOI.
“Area-wise, Cubbon Park is much lesser and close to Vidhana Soudha, so we did not choose it for extra security cover. Mostly, government officers and locals go to Cubbon Park. But Lalbagh is a closed park and many people frequent it,” added joint director, horticulture, A Narayanaswamy.
According former corporator and Lalbagh walkers association member, Chandrashekhar, there is need for security. “I have been walking there for the past 10 years. At 5 am, at least 200 to 300 walkers come to the park, many of whom are women. So far, we have not faced any problems, but it would be better if guards are around,” he said.

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