New Delhi: The Delhi Police is using cameras equipped with facial recognition software for the first time to secure the Red Fort, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hoist the national flag on the 73rd Independence Day, officials said on Wednesday.
A multi-layered security arrangement, involving SWAT commandos and NSG snipers, is being put in place for the national capital in view of the Centre scrapping the constitutional provisions that gave Jammu and Kashmir a special status and tensions with Pakistan.
Army, paramilitary forces and 20,000 Delhi Police personnel have also been deployed.
To identify suspects around the historic Red Fort, police is using cameras with facial recognition technology and has deployed anti-drone detection systems to secure the skies.
Around 500 CCTV cameras have been installed around the venue, where ministers, bureaucrats, foreign dignitaries and common people will gather to hear the Prime Minister.
The roads leading to the Red Fort are under surveillance and police personnel are taking help of trained sniffer dogs to check vehicles in north and central districts of Delhi.
To ensure public convenience during mobility, optimal staff deployment and proper signage installation has been planned. Special squads on motorcycles are deployed.
Security protocols have also been devised for the “At Home” function at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
At both these places, visitors will have to pass through several door-framed metal detectors and they will be frisked with hand-held metal detectors.
Baggage scanners have already been placed at all entry points at the Red Fort venue.
Special “spotters” are keeping an eye on parking areas and kite catchers will ensure a distraction-free event on Thursday.
“We have made an extensive security arrangement for those coming to the Red Fort. Drills have been rehearsed,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (North) Nupur Prasad.
Special control rooms will monitor alerts and coordinate with security agencies, Prasad added.
Officials said Special Weapons And Tactics (SWAT) units and specially-equipped Parakram vans are being stationed at crucial junctions. Police personnel are regularly conducting anti-sabotage drills and making enquiries at hotels for possible suspects lodging there.
Police have prohibited aerial activities, including paragliding, hot-air balloons and quadcopters, until 15th August around the Red Fort.
Any person violating the order will be liable for criminal prosecution, they said.
The Delhi Metro has not announced any change in its services on 15th August, but there will be restrictions on entry and exit at some stations on the Violet Line.
Parking areas, however, have been closed until 2pm on 15th August.