Frisking, searches on in Srinagar on eve of PM's visit | india | Hindustan Times
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Frisking, searches on in Srinagar on eve of PM's visit

india Updated: Jun 24, 2013 15:10 IST
security forces

Taking no chance, security forces continued random frisking and search operations here, particularly in Dal Lake area, which will remain the hub of activities during the visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi tomorrow.

The authorities have already declared road on the bank of famous Dal Lake from Nehru Park to Nishat out of bounds for all civilian vehicles and pedestrain movement for 24 hours from 11am tomorrow when the VVIPs will be in the town.

Senior police officials time and again said there is no militant presence in Srinagar city, including Civil Lines.

However, they said militants are infiltrating into city from outskirts and later escape back into their hideouts after carrying out attack in the city.

Killing of two state police personnel in the heart of the city in broad daylight 72 hours before the two-day visit of PM and UPA chairperson was a cause of concern among the top brass of security forces, who had already directed their men to remain on high alert.

The separatist organisation breakaway Hurriyat Conference (HC) had called for a general strike against the Prime Minister's visit, while an independent MLA from Langate in north Kashmir has announced to protest, demanding return of mortal remain of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, who was hanged on February 9 this year and later buried in the Tihar jail complex.

A UNI correspondent who visited a number of city areas on Monday saw security forces conducting searches of vehicles, particularly motorcycles and other two wheelers.

Official sources said there is a tip-off that militants would try to smuggle in arms and ammunition into the city from outskirts to cause disturbances when PM and Gandhi will be in the town.

Vehicles entering the Civil Lines from the outskirts were being searched at Dawood bridge. Identity cards of all those travelling in the vehicles, besides drivers, were properly being checked before allowing them to proceed towards their respective destinations.

Similar random searches were also conducted at Moulana Azad Road near here, historic Lal Chowk, the nerve centre of the capital city and Sonawar.

Besides checking vehicles, searching bags and other belongings of passengers and drivers, security forces were also seen frisking pedestrians, particularly those carrying bags in their hands.

Official sources said the informers in the field have also been directed to keep a close watch on the activities of anti-social and anti-national elements.

Sharp shooters would remain deployed in the areas where the VVIPs are scheduled to visit.

Additional security forces have been deployed on hills surrounding S K International Convention Complex (SKICC) on the bank of famous Dal Lake, where Singh was scheduled to hold meetings with ministers, top bureaucrats, leaders of different mainstream political parties.

A large number of workers have been pressed into service to clean the Dal Lake near the SKICC.

Sources said security forces have already intensified patrolling in the Dal Lake with the help of water boats.

More security personnel would be deployed in the house boats and other areas in the lake from this evening to foil any militant attempt to cause any disturbances, they said.

Similarly, in south Kashmir, an alert has already been issued to security forces to foil any attempt by anti-social and anti-national elements to create any disturbances during the visit of PMand UPA chairperson who will flag off rail service from Qazigund to Banihal on June 26.