Ayodhya on edge as Shiv Sainiks pour into town

Shiv Sena banners and posters are visible everywhere in Ayodhya and groups of party workers could be seen roaming in the narrow and cramped lanes of the temple town chanting slogans like 'Jai Shriram' and 'Pahle Mandi phir Sarkar' (temple first, governmen

Ayodhya is on the edge as thousands of Shiv Sena workers, mainly from Maharashtra, are pouring into the town ahead of their party supremo Uddhav Thackeray's arrival

Shiv Sena banners and posters are visible everywhere in Ayodhya and groups of party workers are roaming in the narrow and cramped lanes of the temple town chanting slogans like 'Jai Shriram' and 'pahle mandi phir sarkar' (temple first, government later).

According to sources, over 10,000 Sena workers have already arrived in Ayodhya by special trains, buses and other modes of transport. ''More Sena workers are likely to reach here in the next few hours,'' said UP unit president Anil Singh.

Wearing saffron bands, the Sena workers were seen visiting the VHP workshop and clicking pictures of the Ram Temple model and other iconic temples like Hanumangarhi, Kanak Bhavan and others.

A UP Police spokesperson said one additional DGP, one deputy inspector general (DIG), three senior superintendents of police (SSPs), 10 additional SPs, 21 deputy SPs, 160 inspectors, 700 constables, 42 companies of  PAC, five companies of RAF, ATS commandos and drones were deployed here.

Sources said that despite the assurances by the local administration that there was no cause for worry, people here have stocked essential items apprehending trouble in the town. ''We have stocked essential items.....anything can happen here any time,'' Surendra Kumar Tripathi, a resident, told DH.

Sources also said that the prices of vegetables and fruits had increased substantially in the past few days as people started stocking the items. A vegetable vendor in the Chowk area of Faizabad (now Ayodhya) admitted that the prices had shot up in the last couple of days.

Ayodhya administration said that adequate security arrangements had been made to ensure that law and order were maintained during the Sena and the VHP events on Saturday and Sunday. The PAC and central paramilitary forces also had been deployed in the town along with the state police, officials said.


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Officials said that no large groups would be allowed to enter the disputed complex. ''Devotees will be allowed to pay obeisance at the makeshift Ram Temple in small batches of four-five,'' said a senior police officer.

Sources said that Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath would be holding a high-level meeting in the state capital with senior officials to review security arrangements in Ayodhya.

Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo Akhilesh Yadav has demanded deployment of army in the temple town to ensure compliance of the Supreme Court's order for maintaining status quo at the disputed site.

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Ayodhya on edge as Shiv Sainiks pour into town

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