Mumbai put on alert as another terror attack feared | india | Hindustan Times
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Mumbai put on alert as another terror attack feared

india Updated: Jul 15, 2009 13:40 IST
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Intelligence inputs of a possible terror strike in the states of Maharashtra, Goa and Gujarat has prompted the Coast Guard to station at least three ships in the Arabian Sea despite bad weather conditions.

"Following the receipt of the intelligence inputs that there was a possibility of attack through the sea route, three Offshore Patrolling Vessels have been patrolling the western coast," Coast Guard sources said.

The offshore patrol vessels, the biggest ships with the Coast Guard, are out at sea despite the monsoons when waters are very rough and most small boats do not sail due to bad conditions, they said.

All other crew of vessels, including ships and hovercrafts, at all other ports on the Western Coast have been told to be prepared to sail at short notice, the sources said. Inspector General Coast Guard (Region West) Rajendra Singh refused to comment on the deployment of vessels and other measures being taken.

"All measures are being taken to ensure that no incursions are made into the country illegally through the sea route," Singh said.

Union Home Minister P C Chidambaram had said on June 30 that intelligence inputs had been received regarding a possible threat to the states of Maharashtra, Goa and Gujarat from the sea.

Security along the western coast has been high following the November 26 terror strikes where ten armed gunmen entered Mumbai through the sea route using a hijacked Indian fishing vessel.

Over 160 persons were killed and over 200 injured in the terror strikes.

The Navy and Coast Guard have conducted multiple exercises off the coast following the terror strikes, including during the national elections, to ensure security of the coasts.

According to certain reports, an alert has also been sounded in the city where public places like railway stations, five-star hotels, banks and malls have been put on alert following a tip-off that they may be on the hitlist of terrorists.