AP to step up coastal security further: Minister

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Hyderabad, Nov 27 (UNI) Andhra Pradesh, which has a vast coastline, will take effective measures to strengthen the marine security, taking into view the fact that the terrorists, who had targeted Mumbai with lethal weapons, including hand grenades and assault AK 47 rifles, had come by boat.

''We are taking experts' advice to further strengthen marine police stations in the state,'' Home Minister K Jana Reddy told newspersons here.

State Director General of Police S S P Yadav, who participated in the review of security situation by Chief Secretary Ramakanth Reddy, told reporters, ''we are worried about the security threat to the port city of Visakhapatnam in the wake of the Mumbai terror strikes.'' ''We are stepping up security in the coastal region further,'' the police Chief said.

Making an appeal to the people of the state to maintain calm and feel safe and secure, Mr Yadav said, ''we are fully prepared to meet any eventuality.'' The state police was fully geared up to provide security for areas of economic importance.

''We have already protected the hitech city, housing a large number of IT MNCs by sensitising the private establishments on security measures. We will further improve it in the wake of the terror strikes in Mumbai.'' Similarly, all Star hotels in the city had already taken required security measures. They would be improved further, based on the experiences in Mumbai, he added.

Mr Yadav dismissed as ''mere rhetoric'' the terrorists claim that Hyderabad and Junagadh, once princely states, would be liberated.

He parried questions on reports relating to over 300 terrorists getting training in Hyderabad, saying the matter was under investigation.

UNI SM VA RSA KP1846

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