Over 300,000 people expected at Batu Caves for Thaipusam

File photo of devotees making their way to the Sri Maha Mariammam temple in Batu Caves. — ART CHEN/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: Over 300,000 visitors are expected to throng Batu Caves in conjunction with the Thaipusam celebration that starts on Saturday (Feb 4) evening and will last until Sunday (Feb 5).

Acting Selangor police chief Datuk S. Sasikala Devi said this was after the management of temples in Batu Caves informed that they were expecting more visitors when the chariots arrived on Saturday evening.

"Since yesterday, many visitors have been patronising temples in Batu Caves and the number is expected to increase tomorrow.

"So far, the situation in Batu Caves is under control despite traffic congestion in the area,” he told a press conference after checking on the preparations for the Thaipusam festival today.

Meanwhile, he said some 1,888 police personnel would be deployed to ensure that the Thaipusam celebration in Batu Caves goes on smoothly.

Sasikala also advised the visitors not to park their vehicles by the roadside as it could obstruct the procession.

Meanwhile, Kuala Lumpur police chief Datuk Azmi Abu Kassim, in a statement today said a total of 682 police officers and personnel had been deployed to facilitate the chariot procession from the Sri Maha Mariammam temple at Jalan Tun HS Lee to the Subramaniam temple in Batu Caves.

He said following that several roads in the city were closed and traffic diversions were activated beginning last night until 4am on Saturday, as well as from 6 pm to midnight on Monday (Feb 6).

Among the affected roads are Jalan Tun H.S.Lee, Jalan Sultan, Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Jalan Tun Perak/Pudu, Jalan Leboh Ampang, Jalan Ampang, Jalan Munshi Abdullah, Jalan Dang Wangi, Jalan Raja Laut, Jalan Sri Amar, Jalan Tun Razak and Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah.

"The public is advised to plan their journey and use alternative routes to avoid getting stuck in traffic congestion,” he said.

He also urged those with information on any criminal activity to contact the Kuala Lumpur police hotline at 03-2115 9999 or any nearest police station. - Bernama

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