Ahmedabad, Agra, Delhi fortified as India awaits PM Modi's 'friend' Trump

olice personnel patrol a street, ahead of US President Donald Trump's maiden visit to India. PTI
Ahmedabad, Delhi, Agra, the three stops on US President Donald Trump’s itinerary has been put under a massive security blanket ahead of his arrival on Monday. Anti-sabotage teams involving the Army and the paramilitary are conducting checks on the routes to be taken by the visiting dignitaries in New Delhi, as ITC Maurya, the hotel where the US President will check-in has been brought under an unprecedented security cover. 

The Indian security agencies are working in close proximity with their US counterpart to make the visit hassle-free for the President and the First Lady. Anti-drone detachment of NSG, snipers, elite SWAT commandos, kite catchers, canine units, sharpshooters on high-rise buildings and Parakram vans have also been deployed along the routes and areas in and around the hotel where Trump will be staying, PTI quoted officials as saying. 

Delhi buzzes with Secret Service, SPG personnel 

At the ITC Maurya,  located in Diplomatic Enclave in Chanakyapuri, three-layered security has been put in place with police personnel in plain clothes patrolling every floor. Delhi Police's security wing personnel will form part of the inner cordon that will work in close coordination with the United States Secret Service. The security wing of the Delhi Police is a specialised unit tasked with the security of VIPs and visiting foreign dignitaries. The second layer of security will be deployed around the hotel's lobby area, parking, lawn area, and the pool area, while the third one will comprise police personnel from the district police.

Bikers ride past life-size cut-outs of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump on a street. PTi

Hundreds of high-definition CCTV cameras with night vision ability have been installed across the Sardar Patel Marg where hotel ITC Maurya is located to monitor the situation round-the-clock and police personnel from six districts have been deployed for the security arrangements along with nearly 40 companies of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF).

A senior police officer told PTI that in view of the spiraling tensions between Iran and the US, there is a higher threat assessment this time and the agencies are more "cautious and alert" than ever. "We have also requested the anti-sabotage checking teams from paramilitary and army. They have been regularly conducting anti-sabotage checks along every route to be taken by the US President during his visit here," the officer said maintaining anonymity. 

Multi-level security around Taj Mahal

A multi-level security cover has been planned for the visit with police, paramilitary and other forces keeping a hawk-eyed vigil in Agra, where the US President is scheduled to visit the Taj Mahal. The huge police deployment will be in addition to officials of the United States Secret Service, and officials of the National Security Guards (NSG).

Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel patrol a street, ahead of US President Donald Trump's maiden visit to India. PTI

The Agra commissioner said Trump's convoy route from the airport to the Taj Mahal will span about 13 km, and along the way thousands of artistes will welcome him with special performances. "Along the route, 21 designated areas have been marked, some with stages and others on the ground level, where artistes will present the dance forms of Brij region (Mathura-Vrindavan), like Krishna Lila, dances themed on Radha, and other cultural assets of the region,” Kumar said.

Ahmedabad fortified for ‘Namaste Trump’

More than 10,000 security personnel, led by 25 senior IPS officers will be deployed for the roadshow and the “Namaste Trump” event in Ahmedabad, where the PM Narendra Modi and the US top leader will inaugurate the world's biggest cricket stadium Motera.

The massive deployment will be in addition to officials of the United States Secret Service, and personnel of the National Security Guards (NSG) and the Special Protection Group (SPG) guarding the events. The police will be using the anti-drone technology to neutralise any suspicious drone on the route, officials said, adding that an anti-sniper team of the NSG will also be stationed along the route.

Meanwhile, PM Modi said, "India looks forward to welcoming @POTUS @realDonaldTrump. It is an honour that he will be with us tomorrow, starting with the historic programme in Ahmedabad!." This is Trump's maiden India visit since entering the White House in 2016. 

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