All of the policemen reported for their duties at 3 am on Sunday morning, and were released from duty only by 11 am.
Mumbai: The enthusiasm among participants of the 14th Standard Chartered Marathon 2017 was contagious, even for the 5,000-odd policemen deputed for security for the marathon around Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) on Sunday. All of the policemen reported for their duties at 3 am on Sunday morning, and were released from duty only by 11 am.
A policeman who did not wish to be named, said at 10.30 am, “The last meal I ate was Saturday night’s dinner. We will get breakfast soon but I love the fervour of the crowd, their enthusiasm is so contagious I don’t mind the hunger.” Sunday’s event saw over 42,000 participants, including 218 foreign nationals excluding athletes. Over 921 senior citizens participated in the marathon, along with 433 differently-abled people.
The half-marathon, which is a 21-kilometre long run, saw a total of 14,663 participants. About 279 NGOs also participated in the Dream Run, to create awareness about social causes. However, celebrity turnout for the 2017 Marathon was low. Some celebrities including Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group’s Anil Ambani, actors Juhi Chawla, John Abraham and Milind Soman, and film director and producer Nagesh Kukunoor, were present.
Mr Kukunoor said, “I run for the cause of creating awareness about Adapt, an organisation working for the differently-abled. But with fewer celebrities gracing the event, the media coverage has also gone down. I have realised there are now other ways of creating awareness — such as one to one interactions. So I will consider participating in the marathon next year.”