The Chennai city police are going eco-friendly and hi-tech. They will soon have globe-shaped booths, powered by solar power and equipped with wide range cameras, public address system and other surveillance facilties.

The first booth has been set up near the Labour Statue, on Kamarajar Salai, and is a 100 square-feet structure. The booth, costing Rs.10 lakh, was set up by U.S. Adcom, an advertising agency based out of New Delhi.

The solar panels are placed on top of the booth. The power generated will be stored in a battery and used to operate the facilities.

The booths will have two cameras mounted on top. “Each has a range of 500 meters. One will monitor the crowd on the beach and the other will monitor pedestrians and traffic on the road,” said D.A. Tony, south regional head of the advertising agency.

A 19-inch colour monitor will be installed for 24-hour surveillance. “The videos will be automatically saved for 45 days and on the 46 day, will be deleted,” said Mr. Tony.

The booth will have tough window panes to prevent damage during riots. “They will have doors with biometric entry. This booth is a first of its kind in the country,” Mr. Tony said.

Two more booths will be set up near the Gandhi statue and opposite the Secretariat. “We will be setting up similar booths in 30 places in the city, including T. Nagar and other crowded parts,” Mr. Tony said.

S.Baskaran, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Triplicane, said the technology in the booth would help in tracing missing children. “On Kannum Pongal, we traced 160 children who were lost in the crowd without cameras. With the aid of technology, we can do it faster. Besides, this will also help in nabbing chain snatchers,” he said.

The company will be submitting a proposal to the Chennai Corporation to setup foot-over-bridges with escalators.

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Vivek NarayananJune 28, 2012

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