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Custodians of Capital

As an immediate measure to secure the Capital against terror attacks, Delhi Police have deployed vans that were earlier used during riots to secure vital installations in the city, reports Vijaita Singh. See graphics

india Updated: Dec 11, 2008 12:45 IST
Vijaita Singh

As an immediate measure to secure the Capital against terror attacks, Delhi Police have deployed vans that were earlier used during riots to secure vital installations in the city.

The Vajra vans, as these anti-riot vans are called, are being operated by specially trained commandos for the job. They would have enough ammunition to sustain against any kind of attack for the initial few hours.

These vans were deployed more than a week ago and presently six such vans are patrolling in the New Delhi area that is host to several embassies and VIP establishments.

“These vans were deployed last week. They were lying idle and were used occasionally during riots. We have improvised them and are using them to guard against any kind of terrorist attack or contingencies,” said P.S. Bhushan, DCP (police control room).

One of the vans has been deployed at India Gate. The other areas where these vans have been deployed for patrolling are Connaught Place, Khan Market, near the Prime Minister’s residence and Chanakyapuri.

These vans carry grenades, sophisticated weapons like M-5, Glock pistols and spare bulletproof jackets. Each van has four commandos, all in the rank of constables and head constables.

“These policemen have been trained at the National Security Guards camp in Manesar and at the Border Security Force’s camp in Tekanpur, Madhya Pradesh,” said the officer.

Almost all the commandos deployed in these vans are in the age group of 30-35 years. “Before being appointed for the job, they have to clear the mandatory physical fitness test and weapon handling tests. We cannot compromise on the fitness aspect,” said Bhushan.

The vans are equipped with wireless sets for fast and easy communication.

In another development, the Delhi Police on Wednesday sanctioned the deployment of 92 quick reaction teams all over the city.