LAHORE: The three-day celebrations of the 974th annual Urs of Hazrat Ali bin Usman Sheikh Ali Hajveri, more often known as Data Ganj Bakhsh started in Lahore on Wednesday.

Punjab government says it is providing best possible facilitates to the devotees whereas City district administration has put in place all arrangements for security of devotees who have reached here from all over the country to attend the Urs. It said that 2500 police contingent will perform security duty.

Contingents of other law enforcement agencies will function as backup force and teams of rescue 1122 and bomb disposal squad will also be available on demand.

Containers have been placed at Bhatti Chowk, Kacheri Chowk, Circular Road, Karbala Gamay Shah Chow and passageways surrounding the mausoleum have been closed through barbed wires.

Surveillance through CCTV cameras would also bolster the security arrangements to avoid any mishap during the celebrations.

Hazrat Data Ganj Bakhsh Ali Bin Usman Sheikh Ali Hajveri was a great saint of Islam who influenced thousands of people to embrace Islam during his life. His shrine still stands tall in the provincial capital and people from around the world visit the place sporadically to quench the thirst for spiritual knowledge.