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Immersion of Vinayaka idols passes off peacefully in Trichy.

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A festive atmosphere prevailed on the Cauvery bridge between Mela Chinthamani and Mambazhasalai, as Vinayaka idols from different parts of the city were immersed in the river on Wednesday.

Although the police had enforced traffic diversion from 3 p.m. in the city in order to facilitate hassle-free movement of Vinayaka idol processions, the first idol was immersed around 5 p.m.

It was only after 6 p.m., more idols began to reach the Cauvery bridge, where wooden stages were erected on its pavements to help organisers to immerse the idols in the river.

While idols brought from Srirangam, Thiruvanaikovil, Kollidam Tollgate, Lalgudi and Samayapuram were immersed in the Cauvery river from the wooden stage erected at the entry point of the bridge from Mambazhasalai, the idols brought from Thillai Nagar, Woraiyur, Thennur, Bheema Nagar, Ariyamangalam, Varaganeri, Palakarai, Melapudur, Cantonment and others were immersed from the stage erected at the entry point from Mela Chinthamani.

Volunteers of various organisations and policemen helped the organisers immerse the idols. The Cauvery bridge was kept out of bound for public transport and cars from 3 p.m. on Wednesday.

A large number of people, including women and children, witnessed the immersion ceremony. The city police had mad elaborate arrangements on the bridge in order to ensure trouble free immersion.

The city police gave permission for 227 idols. However, according to sources, more than 50 idols were installed at various places without permission. Many of them were brought for immersions.

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The colourfully decorated idols were brought in processions along the important roads and streets in the city.

Policemen accompanied every idol during procession. More than 100 idols were immersed until 8 p.m. The small and medium sized idols were washed awaywith more than 10,000 cusecs of water flowing in the river.

Elaborate security arrangements were in place for the processions. More than 1,000 police personnel and Home Guard personnel were deployed. As many as 11 striking force teams and anti sabotage were also positioned in different parts to prevent untoward incidents.

Meanwhile, tension prevailed in Puthanatham on Wednesday during the Vinayaka idols procession in the village near Manapparai.

Trouble started when some unknown persons pelted stones on the procession at the bazaar.

Angered over this, a large number of people, who were accompanying the idols, staged a road roko. They said that they would not give up the agitation until trouble makers were arrested.

Deputy Inspector General of Police, Tiruchi range, V. Balakrishnan and Superintendent of Police Zia Ul Haq held negotiations with the agitators and promised them suitable action. Following this, they gave up the protest leading to the resumption of the processions.

As many as 40 idols brought from different parts of Puthanatham and neighbouring villages were immersed in the Vinayakar kulam at Edayapatti.

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