The National Security Guard (NSG) will get in touch with Bangladeshi forces to get details of the tactics used by the Dhaka gunmen to better its response in event of a similar attack on Indian soil.
Seven militants stormed an upmarket restaurant in the Bangaldeshi’s capital’s diplomatic zone on July 1 and killed 20 hostages, most of them non-Muslims, including an Indian, during an 11-hour siege.
“We always seek details of such attacks to see the strategies adopted by the attackers. We will soon get in touch with authorities in Dhaka and if required, we may send a team to get spot details,” the chief of India’s premier counter-terrorism force RC Tayal said.
After the Dhaka attack, the NSG, which does a weekly assessment of terror strikes, if any, at home or abroad, has been put on alert.
The Bangladesh strike brought back memories of the 2008 Mumbai attacks that left at least 166 people dead, many of them foreigners. Ten Pakistani terrorists had held the city to ransom for almost three days, targeting hotels and a cafe frequented by foreigners and other public places.
After the attacks, the Indian security establishment had launched a nation-wide exercise to identify sensitive civilian and government installations, including hotels and malls.
The Intelligence Bureau (IB), NSG and state police forces zeroed in on 450 sensitive spots that were ranked on the basis of the threat perception.
“We keep on doing regular exercises at these places. We have three-dimensional models of most of these installations as well,” Tayal said.
The idea was to get familiar with the building plans so that a spot for control room, entries and exits points for commando operations could be identified in case of a hostile situation, sources said.
The NSG added malls to the list of sensitive buildings after it studied the September 2013 Westgate Mall attack in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi. At least 67 people were killed by by al-Shabab militants in a siege that lasted for four days.