77th I-Day: Delhi Under Tight Security Cordon; Sealed Borders, Anti-Drone Radars
Delhi Police has made elaborate security arrangements in the national capital for the 77th Independence Day celebrations.
Over 40,000 security personnel, anti-drone radars, anti-aircraft guns, facial recognition closed circuit TV cameras, and sealed borders are among the security ‘bandobast’ put in place in Delhi.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hoist the national flag from the ramparts of the iconic Red Fort on Tuesday morning to a 21-gun salute and then address the nation.
“This time, August 15 is a more sensitive occasion as we have a G-20 meet scheduled three weeks from now in the Indian presidency and the main events will be held in New Delhi,” HGS Dhaliwal, Commissioner of Police of the Special Cell of Delhi Police. India which holds the G20 Presidency this year is hosting the G20 Leaders’ Summit in September this year in the national capital.
“Anti-terror steps are being taken. There are a lot of anti-social elements; in view of that, we are doing whatever the Delhi Police has to do,” the senior police official said.
Previously, Delhi Police had issued an order restricting the flying of para-gliders, para-motors, hang-gliders, UAVs, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), microlight aircraft, remotely piloted aircraft, hot air balloons, small-sized powered aircraft, quadcopters or para-jumping from aircraft in the national capital from July 22 to August 16.
The Delhi Police order said offenders will be punishable under section 188 of the Indian Penal Code.
Expecting a record turnout of around 30,000 attendees, including VIPs and VVIPs, Delhi Police has increased patrolling and checking of vehicles.
Around 1,800 people from different vocations, with their spouses, have been invited from across the country to be a part of the celebrations at Red Fort as Special Guests.
Security planning consists of multi-layered security cover that involves coordination among various security agencies. The National Security Guard (NSG), Special Protection Group (SPG), Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) and Delhi Police are working together to ensure a safe environment. Paramilitary forces have encircled the Red Fort for a 200-meter radius, while the Delhi Police is taking care of the remaining areas.
Sharpshooters with snipers will be stationed on rooftops in the vicinity of the fort, while helicopters will fly overhead.
The programme is scheduled to commence at 9 am and will continue until noon. Till then, the area will be under complete vigil and strictly a no-fly zone, prohibiting any kind of air balloon, drones and others. Kite-flying will be allowed (above Red Fort) after the culmination of the programme, Delhi Police said.
Moreover, the whole route of PM Modi from Lok Kalyan Marg 7 to Red Fort will be on watch with over 1,000 CCTV cameras.
According to the Delhi Police, the uniformed personnel on the streets are poised to tackle any challenge. “We have received various inputs, based on which adequate measures have been taken,” a senior police officer told ANI.
The borders of the national capital will be sealed tonight, restricting the entry of commercial vehicles, in view of the celebrations of I-Day on Tuesday, and around 3,000 Traffic Police personnel will be deployed across the city to monitor the traffic.
SS Yadav, Special Commissioner of Traffic Police, told ANI that the entry of heavy and medium goods vehicles will be restricted starting tonight and will resume only after the programme ends on Tuesday. Special care is being taken so that the movement of essential services does not get affected.
“On the occasion of the 77th Independence Day, around 3,000 traffic police personnel will be on the streets. The entry of heavy and medium goods vehicles will be restricted on the night of August 14 and will be allowed after the August 15 programme ends. There will be a controlled movement on JLN Marg, Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, and parts of Ring Road near Red Fort, with special care being taken that essential services do not get affected,” Yadav told ANI.
He said that police officials will be deployed around the Red Fort and will guide the programme attendees. “There is a parking arrangement for the guests coming to the Red Fort on the occasion of Independence Day, be they common people or diplomats from different countries,” he added.
Joy Tirkey, DCP North East Delhi, said that in view of the August 15 celebrations, thousands of police personnel will be deployed across the district, along with on the borders of the North East district. “All the vehicles will be checked, and the police will keep vigil on every move,” he said. (ANI)
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