Andhra Pradesh to upgrade security cover around VIPs
The Andhra Pradesh Government is strengthening the security for leaders and police officials in view of the reimposition of the ban on the Maoist Naxalites in the state. The government has placed an order for about 50 bullet-proof vehicles and two mine-proof vehicles which, however, will take some months to be delivered since the vehicles have to be sent to the Ordnance Factory at Medak for bullet-proofing.
The vehicles will be placed in different towns and will be allotted to VIPs during their tour of the Naxalite strongholds. Those eligible for the bullet-proof vehicles are ministers, city police commissioners and district superintendents of police. A few senior officials are also likely to get bullet-proof vehicles.
Besides, the state government is also considering a proposal to purchase sophisticated weapons to take on the Naxalites which, it hopes, the Centre would fund. Meanwhile, a high level meeting in Hyderabad reviewed the security arrangements across the state in view of the likely Maoists retaliation against the ban. The ban was reimposed following the killing of Congress MLA C Narsi Reddy and 10 others on Independence Day by Maoists. The state Home Minister K Jana Reddy has said that the security around the VIPs has been increased by posting about 3,000 security officers to 1,100 VIPs. Barring three, all 294 MLAs in the state have been given an additional armed personal security officer. Earlier, only those from the Naxal strongholds were given this facility. Besides, the government is also considering the request for security by individuals who feel threatened or are on the hit list of the Maoists.
Von: 28 August 2005, http://www.deccanherald.com