No flying zone over Shivaji Park to prevent terror



Mumbai: Shivaji Park ground in central Mumbai where Republic Day celebrations will be held on Saturday, have been declared a 'No Flying Zone' due to intelligence inputs which suggested that terrorists might attempt air strikes, the police said.

"There are no specific intelligence inputs about an air attack at Shivaji Park ground. As a precautionary measure, we requested the the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to disallow flying over the sprawling ground," Joint Police Commissioner (Law & Order) Sadanand Date said.

The DGCA has subsequently declared it as a 'No Flying Zone' for six hours tomorrow, beginning from 6 am, he added.

"Since our department had discussions that terrorists may carry out air strikes, we took this step as a precautionary measure," Date added.

The area has not only been declared a 'No Flying Zone', but paragliding or use of remote-controlled microlight aircraft would also not be allowed, keeping in mind the possibility of terrorists using such methods to attack.

Though there have not been any such inputs this time, Mumbai police had earlier received specific intelligence inputs that terrorists might launch air strikes in the metropolis.

Extensive security arrangements have been made in and around the ground, as the Maharashtra governor, chief minister, other ministers, VVIPs and children are expected to attend the parade by the armed forces.

A reconnaissance of nearby high-rises has also been conducted, the police said, adding that snipers have been positioned on buildings around the ground, so they could have a better view of happenings around Shivaji Park.

A bomb detection and disposal squad along with the local police will be stationed near the ground.

PTI