An elaborate three-tier security cover will be put in place for the 2010 Commonwealth Games to be held in the Capital, with thousands of close circuit TVs, aerial surveillance and police personnel keeping a close vigil in the city during the games.
By far it will be the biggest ever mobilization of police and Central forces personnel who will provide security during the XIX Commonwealth Games, the first to be held in India and only the second in Asia. During the Commonwealth Games from October 3 to 14 next year, 11 competition venues in Delhi and one each in the neighbouring Haryana and Uttar Pradesh will come alive with participants and spectators.
At a meeting of the International Security Liaison Group, set up to coordinate security related matters with participating Commonwealth countries, about 30 Heads of Missions or their representatives were briefed on Wednesday in detail on the security arrangements being made for the mega sporting event.
Union Home Secretary G. K. Pillai who presided over the meeting later told reporters that around 8000 sports persons from 71 countries will participate in the 2010 Commonwealth Games and about one lakh visitors were expected to descend on the city to witness the sporting events. Apart from them, nearly 2000 media persons and officials of 52 Commonwealth countries are also likely to participate in various events. Several heads of States and heads of governments besides other dignitaries are expected to attend the opening and closing ceremonies.
Mr. Pillai said that nearly two billion dollars would be spent on building and upgrading the city and sports infrastructure and conduct of games. While assuring the Heads of Missions of foolproof security during the games, he said the games do not face any specific threat from any of the terrorist organizations.
Asked if the possibility of Lahore type of scenario in which Sri Lankan cricket team was attacked in Pakistan had been taken into consideration, Mr. Pillai said that all possible security-related problems had been given in the presentation before the Heads of Missions who were told about the state of preparedness.
He said that the Head of Mission of Mauritius raised the issue of ``bad driving habits’’ of citizens of Delhi, particularly at roundabouts and he was assured that traffic police and volunteers would instill a sense of discipline among the drivers in the Capital. He added that delegates were satisfied with the security arrangements being put in place for the games.
Asserting that India was capable of hosting Commonwealth Games and handling all security-related arrangements, Mr.Pillai cited the example of huge congregations like Kumbh Melas which have been held without a hitch at regular intervals of 12 years.
The liaison group will hold another conference of the security liaison officers of the participating countries and the Commonwealth Games Associations on September 23-24.