After Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLAs, it’ s now the turn of municipal councillors to feel threatened.
The North Delhi Municipal Corporation has ordered installation of ‘machans’ or watch towers for surveillance and increase in the number of armed security guards posted at the Civic Centre, the headquarters of the north and south Delhi corporations.
The move comes days after eight AAP MLAs approached the Delhi speaker, asking for the installation of CCTV cameras in their assembly offices.
“Officials have been asked to establish ‘machans’ in and around the Civic Centre to increase vigilance. The total number of armed guards stationed will be increased from 21 to 100,” a senior official said.
The Civic Centre is divided into five blocks and also houses offices of the income-tax department.
The civic body has 400 armed guards deployed across the office building with an annual expense of R7.45 crore, borne by stakeholders.
Senior leaders said the increase in security has been ordered to tackle any potential terrorist threat or a hostage situation.
“The Civic Centre houses the mayors of the two corporations and their commissioners and other department heads. The building also houses offices of the income-tax department. The building witnesses heavy footfall of residents and citizens, which makes security and safety even more important,” said a senior municipal leader.
Previously, the corporation had proposed the deployment of Delhi Police and CISF personnel. But this was turned down due to a financial crunch.
Sources said officials had been asked to carry out a survey of any spot not covered by the CCTV cameras.