New Delhi, Oct 3 (ANI): With hours to go before the opening ceremony of the XIX Commonwealth Games, the authorities have stepped up security and ordered all major shops, markets and commercial establishments to remain closed on Sunday.
Over one-lakh security personnel have being deployed to thwart any threat to the sporting extravaganza.
According to various security agency sources, security personnel deployed for the Games include about 175 paramilitary companies (about 18,000 personnel) including 3,000 commandos, 100 anti-sabotage teams, 200 specially trained dogs and 15 bomb disposal squads.
Commandos, snipers and police personnel have been deployed at venues, at allied places such as luxury hotels and metro stations to ensure the safety of thousands of athletes.
Surface-to-air missile squadrons and anti-aircraft guns have been put in place, mobile and static observation posts have also been created to keep tabs on any suspicious activity.
The locals in the national capital seemed pleased with the security arrangements for the mega sporting event.
"I am not facing any problem. The security arrangements are good and the security should be the same always," said Ramesh Chand Sharma, a local.
The Prince of Wales, Prince Charles, will read out the Queen's message and President Pratiba Devisingh Patil will deliver an address to signal the commencement of the 2010 Games at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, the main venue of the, during the opening ceremony to be held here this evening.
The Queen's baton that continued its journey through all the important places including the Games Village, will reach its final destination, the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here today.
Prince Charles will receive the Baton and will read the Queen's message on this occasion. resident Patil will deliver an address to signal the commencement of the Games.
The opening ceremony will begin at 6: 30 p.m. with hosts of the previous edition of the Games in 2006 Australia, leading the march past followed by other countries in alphabetical order, while hosts India will be at the last with Olympic gold medalist Abhinav Bhindra being its flag bearer. (ANI)