Staff Reporter

'Police have a responsibility to protect the dignitaries visiting the State'

Cabinet discusses security lapse at IISc. Government to strengthen intelligence wing of the Police DepartmentSecurity at important institutions to be tightened

BANGALORE: Minister for Information B. Shivaram on Saturday said that providing security to important institutions is the responsibility of the State Government, and in this context it is the prerogative of the Government to provide security to the Indian Institute of Science (IISc.), irrespective of whether the Director of the institute seeks it or not.

Briefing presspersons after a meeting of the State Cabinet, Mr. Shivaram said that IISc. Director P. Balaram might have felt that he does not want to convert the campus into a fortress, but the Government cannot shirk its responsibility.

The police have a responsibility to protect the dignitaries visiting the State, he said.

The Cabinet, he said discussed the security lapse at the institute and the measures to be taken in future when international seminars are hosted.

The Principal Secretary to Government (Home), the Director-General of Police and the Bangalore Police Commissioner briefed the Cabinet. Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh, who warned the officers for the laxity, if any, asked them to tighten security at places hosting seminars, the Minister said.

Mr. Shivaram said the Government decided to invigorate and strengthen the intelligence wing of the Police Department.

Asked whether the "same dejected police officers, who are not wanted in executive work, would be posted to the intelligence wing," as is the practice, the Minister said that it will be changed.

He said that only those officers with commitment and who are willing to be in intelligence will be deputed to that wing.

He said that the Cabinet went into the security lapse on the same institute premises when a Tibetan protestor raised slogans from atop a building during the visit of the Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao. The Government had appointed Director-General of Police (CoD) K.R. Sreenivasan to hold an inquiry into the security lapse and he has submitted his report to the Government.

Mr. Shivaram said that the city police is effective and has been asked to tighten security to important institutions. He did not rule out ordering an inquiry into the security lapse at the IISc.

Meanwhile, the security agencies have been asked to keep a vigil in Bangalore on the eve of New Year.

House session

The Cabinet decided to request the Governor to convene the joint session of the State legislature on January 19. The two Houses will sit for 10 days.