A day after the Delhi police arrested four IS members for allegedly planning attacks on prominent malls in NCR, security arrangements at Gurgaon’s biggest mall —Ambience Mall — were far from adequate.
An HT team visited the mall on Thursday to conduct a reality check. What was appalling was that the correspondent, carrying a toy gun, could easily cross the security check without getting caught.
None of the security guards at the mall’s checkpoints noticed the toy pistol. This is despite at entry gate 4, a guard frisking the correspondent and another checking the cameraman’s bag.
When the correspondent asked one of them if they were told about stepping up security, the guard was clueless.
Once the team entered the mall building, despite brandishing the toy firearm, not a single visitor or security guard in the mall building could spot the toy weapon.
There were hardly two guards deployed on each floor.
Despite the CCTV monitoring system, no one stopped the cameraman from clicking photos inside the mall. On the top floor, there was absolutely no security.
It was a salesman at one of the shops who spotted the gun and asked if the team it was from the police.
Despite roaming around the mall for over half-an-hour, no one spotted the toy gun, which is in sharp contrast with the tall claims of elaborate security arrangements made by the mall management.
The state of affairs assumes significance given the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande a day before Republic Day.
“We have elaborate arrangements in place. Personnel from the nearby police outpost visit the mall thrice a day,” said OP Sharma, chief security officer of the mall. He also said 350 private security guards have been employed and 245 CCTV cameras were functional.
Located near Sirhaul toll plaza on the Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway, Ambience Mall sees over 35,000 visitors every day.
On Wednesday, the Delhi police had announced the arrests of four ISIS members who were allegedly planning attacks in prominent malls of NCR.