The third edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) has not just brought heartache to IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi, but has also given a headache to those tasked with protecting him. The heightened security has also led to skirmishes with media ever since the IPL row has begun.
According to sources, Modi's security concern was taken into consideration a few years back but it had to be upgraded ever since the underworld also issued threats against him last year. According to Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime) Deven Bharti, Modi had received threats from gangster. Chotta Shakeel.
“The threat is about 6-7 months old and following that we had reviewed his security,” Bharti said while confirming the threat to Modi's life.
The underworld threat had forced police to upgrade the security being provided to Modi and the number of policemen guarding the now troubled IPL honcho was doubled.
“We have various grades when it comes to providing security,” Naval Bajaj, Additional Commissioner of Police (protection and security) said.
He said that Modi earlier used to get two armed guards, one for day and night duty each. “There was some threat and so we reviewed it,” Bajaj said and added, “He has now been provided 2+2 cover which means that he has two armed guards with him at all time of the day.”
Bajaj added that Modi’s family members have also been provided armed escorts. “His wife and son too have been provided security and they have one armed guard throughout,” he added.
Sources, however, say that ever since his row with former minister Shashi Tharoor and BCCI came out, the number of private guards around him has increased.
“He has a posse of about 20 men around him and four of whom form the inner core,” a source said while pointing out that it were these men who had attacked the media men recently and against whom a case was registered at Sahar police station.
Actor Ronit Roy, whose agency provides security to many high profile people, including Modi, refused to comment on the kind of security being provided to Modi. “It is against our policy to comment on the security deployment to our clientele,” he said.