SPG, which provides security to the prime minister, has advised PM Modi not to hold impromptu road shows.
Sources in Cabinet Secretariat told NDTV that the SPG has sensitized its personnel about the latest threat. The Close Protection Group or CPG – the innermost cordon that moves with the prime minister – has also been alerted accordingly. These shooters are capable of killing terrorists within a matter of seconds.
The SPG also has a quick response team known as Counter Assault Team or CAT. This team uses state of the art weapons and has undergone rigorous training regime. The Counter Assault Team takes swift action during any attack on the prime minister. They have also been briefed about the latest danger to the PM.
The Home Ministry‘s Naxal desk, meanwhile, is in touch with the Pune police. “As of now the investigations are at nascent stage but we will seek a report from state police,” said a senior police officer.
SPG officials are worried as there have been times in the past when PM Modi has overruled their advice.
A recent example cited by the SPG is Republic Day Parade 2018. After the parade, PM Modi refused to sit in his car and headed towards the spectators to greet them. The SPG was taken aback but moved along the PM as he waved to the crowds. Two SPG men moved along with a thin briefcase, which, sources tell NDTV, is actually a portable, foldout ballistic shield that offers impressive ballistic protection.
“Whenever security forces whiff any threat or any type of suspicious activity, they just have to flick the folded shield downwards to deploy it quickly to secure the prime minister,” explained a source.
Sources also disclose that drivers of the convoy of the PM were briefed specially. The convoy includes two armoured BMW 7 Series sedans, six BMW X5 SUVs and one Mercedes Benz ambulance. Other than this, the convoy also includes security units vehicles and jammers. Right at the front and at the back of the convoy of the Prime Minister, there are vehicles of the Delhi Police Security Staff. Then, there are two more vehicles on to the left and right and in the mid position there is the vehicle of the Prime Minister. In order to mislead the attackers, the convoy involves two dummy cars identical to that of Prime Minister.
The jammer vehicle has many antennas over it. These antennas are capable of diffusing bombs kept on either side of the road at the distance of hundred metres. All of these cars are occupied by the accurate shooters from NSG. At any given time the Prime Minister is accompanied by a team of around 100 people for security purpose. “When the Prime Minister walks, he is surrounded by commandos of NSG clad in uniform as well as in civil dress,” finally adds a source.
“Security of the Prime Minister is the top priority. Maoists are fighting a lost battle. Maoist insurgency has considerably come down,” Home Minister Rajnath Singh said.
The Pune Police told a court on Thursday that they seized the letter with the Prime Minister’s assassination bid from the residence of one of the five persons they had arrested in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon violence.
The five arrested had links with the banned CPI-Maoist – Dalit activist Sudhir Dhawale, lawyer Surendra Gadling, activists Mahesh Raut and Shoma Sen and Rona Wilson. The letter was found from the home of Delhi-based activist Rona Wilson, the police claimed in the sessions court, according to news agency PTI.