High Alert In Jammu Ahead Of PM Modi's Visit

Representational Photo

Surveillance Up On Borders, Checkpoints Established Along Highways; Frisking Intensified

Srinagar- The Security has been beefed up across Jammu and Kashmir, especially the winter capital in an attempt to thwart any subversive activities or untoward incidents in the run-up to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s one day visit to the Union Territory on April 24.

Police and paramilitary forces have been deployed in strength and are conducting random checking of vehicles at hundreds of places in J&K, a senior police officer said.

Special checking points have been set up at various places in Jammu region including entry and exit points as a precautionary measure to maintain law and order. The move is aimed at foiling any attempt by militants to strike in the erstwhile state ahead or during the Prime Minister's visit.

Notably, this will be PM Modi’s first ever visit to Jammu and Kashmir since the erstwhile state’s semi-autonomous status was revoked by New Delhi and bifurcated it into two Union Territories.

The PM’s visit to Palli in Jammu division on April 24 is also expected to witness some inaugurations and announcements of developmental projects.

As per sources, the police authorities in the Jammu region especially in the Kathua, Samba, Poonch and Rajouri belt have already taken a thorough review of the security situation and called for measures that would strengthen the turbulent border.

“Security forces have started to carry out surprise searches in several districts especially in Samba district to ensure security for the public rally of Prime Minister Modi,” a police official told Kashmir Observer

The police sources further said that anti-sabotage checking, CCTV surveillance, snipers atop high rise buildings, surprise nakas, makeshift drop gates and sniffer dogs will also be put in place to thwart any militant attempt to disrupt the smooth conduct of PM’s first visit to J&K since August 5th, 2019.

“All the high rise buildings around the main venue will be used by sharpshooters of J&K Police and CRPF.” A police official said.

Pertinently, J&K Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha had earlier chaired a crucial security review meeting with chiefs of the IB, RAW, and NIA as part of the preparation for the PM’s visit.

Ahead of the PM’s visit, security forces have also sounded an alert of possible militant movement across the borders. As per sources, the alert has been sounded in wake of the high possibility of a militant movement across the border.

In addition, the official noted, close vigil is being maintained all along the International Border (IB) from Pathankot to Jammu. “Border Security Force (BSF) troops guarding the IB have already been put on high alert. Security forces have also started frisking commuters. We’re already in the process of setting up static and mobile checking points across Jammu.” The official noted

Besides these steps, Drones fitted with cameras will also be used to provide aerial surveillance during searches. “A team from the Prime Minister’s Special Protection Group (SPG) will arrive probably two days before the PM's scheduled arrival and will take over all the venues where PM Modi is scheduled to visit.” The police official said.

Along With these steps, the government forces will also erect extra checkpoints and install mobile bullet proof bunkers to intensify frisking of commuters and pedestrians.

Notably, the security agencies have also decided to step up vigil around vital installations in Kashmir and conduct random frisking of vehicles especially those leaving the valley through National Highway.

“There will be a slight beef up in the security situation in Kashmir and a tight vigil will be put in place across the valley until PM’s visit concludes.” The police official told Kashmir Observer.

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Zaid Bin Shabir

Zaid Bin Shabir is a special correspondent at Kashmir Observer. He tweets @Zaidbinshabir

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