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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Keeping in view the stampede during a Lord Jagannath festival in 2006, Odisha Govenrment today approved a standard operating procedure for smooth management of the Rath Yatra at Puri on July 18.

"All the departments linked with Nabakalebara festival have prepared their own disaster management plan. Taking all these plans together, Odisha State Disaster Management Authority has prepared a standard operating procedure (SOP) for proper management of the eventualities," special relief commissioner (SRC) G V V Sarma said.

"We have prepared SOP for all such possible events.

The officials are told what to do and what not to during the mishaps," Sarma said adding the booklets have been prepared to be distributed among the officials who are put in charge of different works.

Sarma said OSDMA would conduct two mock drills ahead of the festival and teams of Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) to be deployed at sea brach and grand road on the rath jatra day, Sarma said.

This apart, at least 30 first aid centres and 30 ambulance units would be deployed in the grand road on the Rath Jatra day, an official release said adding close circuit cameras would be fitted both inisde the temple and outside on July 18.

Tourists would also not be allowed to use unsafe buildings on both side of the grand road for safety reasons, they said.

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