Killer gadgets to thwart attack on Parliament

Last Updated: Oct 29, 2011, 15:57 PM IST

Pankaj Sharma/Zee Research Group

India is strengthening in a big way its security apparatus to protect Parliament House complex in the national capital in view of the escalating terror threat. The exercise also comes barely two months ahead of the 10th anniversary of the bloody terror attack on Parliament in December 2001.

It is learnt that the security apparatus has identified forced entry as the key threat to safety of the complex. Keeping this in mind the security set-up has installed modern gadgets like bollards, tyre-killers, road blockers and boom barriers at various gates of Parliament.

A circular issued by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat dated October 13, 2011 noted that such gadgets have been installed to prevent forced entry into the Parliament House complex. The circular, a copy of which has been reviewed, was issued by Joint Director (Security) Ashis Chakravartty.

The security establishment is keen to ensure that the modern gadgets installed at Parliament House complex are able to operate smoothly in case of any attack. It has laid out strict guidelines on employing these gadgets to prevent any mishap. Upon review recently it was found that failure to adhere to stipulated guidelines had caused a stray accident involving the blockers in operation.

The Rajya Sabha circular admitted that this had happened due to failure in observing the prescribed safety precautions. The circular laid out these guidelines as follows: Drivers are suggested to maintain a distance of at least five feet between two vehicles while crossing the boom barrier. The speed of the vehicle has also been fixed at 10 km/hr till it crosses the gadget.

India stepped up its effort to secure its Parliament post December 13 attack in 2001. However, upon various reviews, the arrangements have been found to be wanting. An earlier story had exposed the less than cent per cent responsible attitude of Parliamentarians.

It was found that based on figures provided by Parliament security and tabulated by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat under Right To Information (RTI) Act, a total of 395 crucial belongings required for gaining access to Parliament premises were either stolen or lost between 2008 and 2010. It included entry passes, parking labels, VIP tags, RF tags and other kinds of passes. This internal report also showed that the number of such cases had risen from 136 in 2008 to 147 in 2010. However, not all of these were lost by members themselves.

The Parliament Security Service of Rajya Sabha looks after the security set-up in Parliament House complex. A combined team of Delhi Police, ITBP, CRPF and Parliament Security Service staff are on security duties for safeguarding the Parliament House complex, Members and VVIPs who visit Parliament.