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Last Updated: May 15, 2007 - 2:05:15 AM
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Heavy security on Chandigarh's 'romance street'
Feb 14, 2007 - 5:27:14 PM
But many eager to enter were able to reach the students centre, popularly called Stu-C, where the maximum crowd was on V-Day.

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[RxPG] Chandigarh, Feb 14 - Geri route, a street here frequented by young couples, was out of bounds for lovebirds on Valentine Day Wednesday as there was heavy police presence to prevent any untoward incident.

The street was christened 'Geri route' over two decades ago with youngsters zipping around on motorbikes and swanky cars. But on Wednesday, it lay under police siege during the peak hours between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. There were more cops than young couples!

Nearly a dozen educational institutions are also located on this road.

There were 10 barricades on the three-km stretch from Sector 9 to 11 and a portion of the road was completely sealed for traffic.

A delegation of shopkeepers from the busy Sector 10 market pleaded with the police to open the road from at least one end so that their business was not sacrificed in the name of 'preventing love'.

'The police do this every year. Why can't they devise a more effective system to deal with any rowdies instead of sealing off our market,' said Sanjay, a shopkeeper.

In all, 42 barricades were set up across the city, most of them near girls' colleges, Sukhna Lake, Geri route and the Panjab University campus.

'We are just doing our duty. Some boys do tend to get rowdy if our presence is not there,' a sub-inspector told IANS.

The police do not want a repeat of an incident few years ago when a couple of girls on their two-wheelers were molested on Geri route by an unruly group of boys.

'The police are playing spoilsport for everyone just because of the wrong doings of some people years ago,' remarked Radhika, an undergraduate student.

University authorities themselves sealed all but one gate of the institution to restrict entry. Only those with identity cards were allowed entry.

But many eager to enter were able to reach the students centre, popularly called Stu-C, where the maximum crowd was on V-Day.

However, all these areas had scores of vendors selling red-coloured balloons and other gift items.

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