Thursday, May 6, 2010

No specific threat to Games: police

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) recently informed the Rajya Sabha that there is “no specific threat to the Commonwealth Games.”

To ensure that the Games are safe and secure, Delhi Police spent around Rs 125 crore on buying security equipment and on modernisation projects.

Recently, the Special Cell of Delhi Police claimed Salman Ahmed, a member of the terrorist outfit- Indian Mujahideen (IM), had told them that they were “regrouping” and wanted to stall the Commonwealth Games and World Cup cricket match in Delhi.

Ahmed was arrested in February for allegedly planting a bomb at Children’s Park in India Gate on September 13, 2008 and allegedly killing Inspector Mohan Chand Sharma during an encounter at Batla House a few days later.

Police claimed that the group was planning suicide attacks on VVIP’s and politicians.

In a reply to a question by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Member of Parliament Rajiv Pratap Rudy on the threat perception to the Games, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) replied no specific threat inputs have been received so far.

It said “the security arrangements for the Commonwealth Games are regularly reviewed by the Empowered Security Committee, which comprises representatives from various security agencies.”

An International Security Liaison Group (ISLG) headed by a senior official of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) regularly reviews the security arrangements and briefs the participating countries.

In the first phase of the modernisation scheme that will become operational before the Commonwealth Games, 87 roads covering approximately 210 kilometres of road length and 220 signalised intersections will be covered.

“All the necessary arrangements have been taken by the police to conduct the games,” said Rajan Bhagat, police spokesman.

England hockey chief urges vigilance ahead of Commonwealth Games in Delhi

In the wake of the Mumbai bombings in November 2008 and a terror threat directly targeting the Hockey World Cup, the Indian Premier League and Commonwealth Games made earlier this year, fears of possible attacks are high.

But having attended a problem-free World Cup, England Hockey are well positioned to advise other sports on how best to approach the Games, and Munday emphasised the importance of good communication levels between administration, athletes and staff.

"We were fortunate because the World Cup was being used in some ways as a test event for the Commonwealth Games and we were more than satisfied with the support we got from the Foreign Commonwealth Office and the Met Police," Munday said.

"The advice I would give to all other governing bodies is put in the preparation. Make sure you're comfortable you've left no stone unturned in the procedures in place for your team and how you're going to respond if something happens.

"The athletes have to have faith in our processes and procedures and my feeling was the relationship and information flow we had between the team was good which I think helped the guys.

"I would advise other sports to have that type of open dialogue with athletes and staff because they have the right to know everything we know so being very clear about how that communication process is going to work is critically important."

Echoing Munday's sentiments, England and Great Britain defender Richard Mantell said the open communication between all parties at the World Cup had made for a more relaxed environment and instead of leaving players worrying had allowed them to focus on their hockey.

"It was important for us," he said. "Before we went I'm not sure we realised actually how important it would be for us to get that information and know whats going on.

"Security always has such an impact on us as athletes it was really important that we had that understanding of what was going on so we could focus on the job at hand. It was important to understand the bigger picture - not to frighten us - but to understand everything that was going on."

Having returned from the World Cup early after suffering a dislocated and broken ankle during England's 5-2 victory over Pakistan, Mantell insists he is well on the road to recovery.

Early indications suggested he could have been ruled out for up to 12 months but the penalty-corner specialist is hoping to be back training by mid-August. "Time frame is always difficult but we think six months," he continued.

"But obviously the priority is making sure I come back stronger. It's not an injury you typically see on a hockey pitch but I was very lucky with our team doctor being on hand and he was very positive about being able to sort it out.

"I ruptured my ACL in 2005 so I know what's involved in getting back to international fitness."

India have bright prospects in CWG: Bhupathi

Tennis ace Mahesh Bhupathi on Thursday said India have bright prospects in the forthcoming Commonwealth Games and players have begun preparing for the upcoming sporting extravaganza to be held in New Delhi.

"It's really exciting that India is hosting the Commonwealth Games. We will try to get as many medals as possible. There are still a few days left for this, preparation for the big event is going on in full swing," Bhupathi said during the inauguration of his roof-top tennis academy, made at a height of 117 feet atop a shopping mall.

Bhupathi further said India have bright future in Somdev Devvarman and Yuki Bhambri.

"We have the potential to move forward. India have made the world group stage of Davis Cup after a long time. Somdev and Yuki are talented youngsters and they have got potential. Somdev is close to break into 100. They are moving in the right direction," the ace doubles player said.

On Sania Mirza's return to courts post-marriage, Bhupathi said, "It will be great to have her back on court. I heard she had started practising, it's good news for the tennis-buffs."

Delhi to receive beautification largesse (Lead)

A huge sum of Rs.263.5 crore (about $58 million) has been allocated for the beautification of Delhi for the upcoming Commonwealth Games, the Rajya Sabha was informed Thursday.

So far the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) has spent Rs.23 crore, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has spent Rs.42 crore and the Public Works Department (PWD) has spent Rs.92 crore, Minister of state for Youth Affairs and Sports Pratik Prakashbabu Patil said.

The money is being spent on building new flyovers, overbridges, roads, footpaths, better street furniture and cleaning up the city of 16 million people.

ROBOCOP, a new police official for Commonwealth games

Delhi  has got a new police official ROBOCOP who is very much in news these days. With the Commonwealth Games round the corner and reports of constant terror threats, ROBOCOP isthe  new Mini Remote Operating Vehicles (MROV) that will help commandos in a hostage situation and even defuse bombs.

Canada based ICOR Technology manufactured robot, ROBOCOP can not only trace the explosive but lift it and put it in a Total Containment Vehicle (TCV), which is used for defusing bombs. This way, bomb squad personnel will not have to expose themselves to the explosives.

MROV has a robotic arm with a 5 degree movement including a turret, shoulder, elbow, wrist and claw joint. It can lift approximately 20 kgs and drag up to 130 kgs. The caliber T5 robot are used by Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) teams across the world and can also drag injured people to safety, climb stairs and negotiate rocky terrain. It has a maximum speed of 8 km /hr.

The SWAT robots can also fire weapons if they are mounted on it, guided by the five laser cameras with pan, tilt and zoom features. This feature is especially useful in hostage situation.

The Caliber T5 robot can be operated from a Command and Control Unit within a distance of 500 metres in direct line of sight and up to 300 metres in a closed building. It can be used in narrow passages and even planes.

Jamia Millia Islamia gearing up for Commonwealth Games

Jamia Millia Islamia is gearing up to play an important role during the Commonwealth Games to be held in October 2010.

Jamia is going to be a venue for practice sessions of Rugby 7’s and Table Tennis and has consequently upgraded its games and sports facilities for the Oct 3-14 Games.

Jamia’s students are also volunteering to help during the Commonwealth Games. Once the Commonwealth Games are over, the students of the university will enjoy these upgraded sports facilities, which match international standards, the university said in a statement.

“There is a lot of excitement in the Jamia campus about the Commonwealth Games and the University community is looking forward to playing an important role in the event,” the university said.

The university will accommodate 700 guests on campus for which it has received funds from the government to upgrade its existing hostel facilities and infrastructure.

This infrastructure will be a permanent asset for the university since this falls under the category of ‘legacy infrastructure’ which means that once the games are over, they become the assets of the university and will be used by students.

Two new hostels (one for boys and one for girls) are being built for the purpose. The attempt of the university is to make sure that part of the new hostels are ready by September so that students do not face any disturbance in their academic calendar.

The university will remain closed from October 1-15 in the coming academic session.

Delhi Police to get mini robot to tackle terror threat

Ahead of the Commonwealth Games, the Delhi Police is set to buy a mini remote-operating vehicle (MROV) that can detect and defuse bombs and explosives, an official said Thursday.

Delhi Police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat said: ‘We had a technical evaluation of the MROV (Wednesday). This is the first step in the procurement process.

‘Bidding for the price is yet to be done. We are hoping to get it before the Commonwealth Games,’ he added.

Manufactured in Canada, the primary function of the MROV is to detect and disarm hidden bombs and explosives. The robot, which weighs 65 kg, can be controlled by a remote within a radius of 500 metres. It can drag weights of up to 113 kg.

The MROV has arms and shoulders and also four night-vision cameras. It is weather-proof but not fire resistant.

It can operate underwater and over rough terrain, moving at a maximum speed of 8 kmph and a minimum of speed of 3 kmph.

Joint Commissioner (north) Karnal Singh said: ‘Although the device is designed in Canada, it is suitable in the Indian scenario, particularly in the national capital where it will be able to help in bomb scare situations.’

back to top