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Healthy Caribbean Coalition - Smoking banned in WC venues

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Source: http://www.newagebd.com/2010/dec/30/spt.html#2

Atif Azam

If you are a smoker better don’t go to the stadium to watch the matches of the World Cup 2011. Cigarettes, alcohol and musical instruments are among the items banned at Bangladesh’s World Cup venues.

The banned items also include firearms, toy guns, explosives and fire crackers, sharp materials, glass bottles and tin cans, bamboo and metal sticks, laser pointers, cooler bags and boxes, water in transparent plastics bottles, professional video cameras, unwanted flag, banner, placards etc.

‘We are determined to ensure a tight security for the players. Any item that may cause harm will not be allowed at the venues. Cigarette is of course one of the items. India has already banned cigarette and I don’t see any problem for us to do the same,’ said Mesbahuddin Serniabat, the security director of the Local Organising Committee.

‘We must remember that a security lapse has cost Pakistan very dear as no cricket team is willing to visit the country. We are also trying our level best to put on a good show as it involves the country’s image,’ Mesbah said.

A total of 700 members of the law enforcing agencies are taking extensive training at the Tangail Police Academy under the guidance of the Dhaka metropolitan police commissioner, Benazir Ahmed, who is anchoring the total security.

Rapid Action Battalion and members of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police will handle the security of the players from the airport to the hotel and stadium while Army and Air Force personnel will be kept on standby to provide assistance in case of emergency.

The International Cricket Council also instructed to make the venues and adjacent areas as no-fly zones.

All the road-side shops will be demolished before the World Cup while all the houses in around 300 yards of the venues will be covered by security personnel mostly on the roof tops.

No car will be allowed to enter the restricted zone apart from the team bus and the cars carrying the ICC officials, media, ambulance, officials of the teams, on-duty law enforcement officers and cars carrying flags and utility (food) providing vehicles.

In Dhaka, cars will be restricted to enter from four points - Old Mirpur 10, Proshika, Sony Cinema Hall and Mirpur 10 - on the matchdays.

Even they will request the respected members of the parliament and other dignitaries to walk from where the cars will not be allowed to enter,’ said Mesbah.

‘We feel extremely sorry for the people of Mirpur as they will go through a lot of trouble but I guess they will co-operate considering the magnitude of the event,’ said Mesbah.

The possibility of a dedicated lane, as was the case at the Commonwealth Games in India, was ruled out to avoid traffic jam as the players will be given a VIP security when they travel from the hotel to the venues.

‘I don’t think that is possible as the roads in Bangladesh are not wide enough to have a dedicated lane,’ said Mesbah.

On the day of the opening ceremony, cars will be stopped at the Dainik Bangla crossing, Paltan crossing, Gulistan, GPO crossing, Golap Shah Mazar and Shilpa Bhaban.

About the possibility of any sabotage in the World Cup the security director said it is clearly in their minds and they are working accordingly. Javed Patwari, an additional inspector general of police, is working with the Special Branch to avoid any sabotage.

‘Our security forces will be working in around the venues one month before the opening ceremony and every day it will gather some momentum,’ he said.

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