Patil to visit Delhi Metro to review security

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New Delhi, Jun 3 (UNI) After reviewing the security needs of the Delhi Metro, Home Minister Shivraj Patil will now visit it to get a first hand experience of the growing security requirements especially in view of perceived terror threats to the ever expanding mass rapid transport system.

The Home Minister would visit the Dwarka sector and the Vishwavidyalaya strech of the Delhi Metro tomorrow evening, a spokesman of the Home Ministry said here today. Mr Patil's visit is significant in view of the rapid expansion of the Delhi Metro of which three new stations were inaugurated today.

Earlier, a high-level meeting was held at the Home Ministry yesterday at which presentations were shown to Mr Patil about the current security measures and requirements of manpower and gadgets for the mass rapid transport system in the capital and elsewhere.

The meeting discussed the rapidly increasing security needs of the Delhi Metro both in terms of security personnel and equipment.

Since Delhi Metro is expanding very fast with about 80 new stations to be inaugurated during the next two years, the Government has to to do advance planning to meet its security needs.

Since the Metro is presently being provided security by the CISF, its additional battalion needed to be raised and proper training provided to the personnel so that they could effectively protect the Mass Rapid Transport system.

Moreover, the ministry after proper review would do the advance planning for providing security to not only the Delhi Metro but the metros coming up in Mumbai and Bangalore.

The Ministry apparantly wants the DMRC to bear the cost of hi-tech gadgets like X-ray machines for luggage checking.

However, the DMRC has vehemently opposed the idea of footing the bill completely since all the security equipment is very costly.

Moreover, providing security to commuters was the primary responsibility of the government.

The government as well as the CISF, which is guarding the network, wants that the DMRC put an X-ray machine for luggage checking in all its 59 stations. As each machine costs Rs three crore, the DMRC will have to spend Rs 177 crore to buy them alone.

The Centre is also pressing the DMRC to buy Door Frame Metal Detectors (DFMD), hand-held metal detectors and arrange barracks and housing facilities for the CISF personnel with the argument that the Metro Railway was a profitable venture.

The Metro at present has has 59 stations under Phase-I, three were inaugurated today and 15 more stations will come up on Delhi's Metro map in another two months. Eighty more stations will be added to the Delhi Metro when it completes its Phase-II connecting satellite towns Noida, Gurgaon and Ghaziabad by 2010.

UNI AJ RR RAI2000

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