Multi-layered security has been in place around the historic Red Fort – the venue where the country is set to celebrate its 70 years of Independence Day. The Mughal fort will see the presence of senior ministers, top bureaucrats and foreign dignitaries, besides a large audience to hear the Prime Minister Narendra Modi who will address the nation from the rampant of the Red Fort.
Security has also been beefed up around Rajpath where a seven-day-long cultural festival ‘Bharat Parv’ is underway. The step has been taken as people have been flocking to the area to witness the illumination of North Block, South Block and other government buildings after sunset in the run up to August 15.
Strict security measures were in force in curfew-bound Srinagar ahead of the Independence Day celebrations with large contingents of paramilitary and police personnel being deployed across the city. Entire areas around the Red Fort have been put under a massive surveillance.
According to police, residents and even beggars, trees, almost everything will be under the radar of security agencies. Leaves of police personnel have been cancelled for ensuring adequate strength for deployment, said the police. A special team of National Security Guard (NSG) snipers and commandos will form the inner layers of the security cordon. Anti-aircraft guns have been deployed to thwart any aerial intrusion by objects like drones and projectiles. Also, the police are surveying the areas in the vicinity of the Red Fort and have collected details of over 9,000 people residing there.
Panoramic photography will be used to ensure a close watch in balconies and windows that open towards Red Fort. Security agencies have also marked out over several trees in the area. Army and NSG officials will run a special communication and command centre to keep a close watch on the proceedings of the day at Red Fort.
Metro stations nearby will be closed till the Prime Minister’s engagements there. Security along the route to be taken by the Prime Minister’s cavalcade from 7 RCR to Red Fort will be monitored with the help of hundreds of CCTV cameras. The usual security drill is being followed but some extra measures have been put in place in the wake of protests for over a month in Srinagar or elsewhere in the Valley, the police official said.