With Prime Minister Narendra Modi facing increasing threats from terrorists, his security detail has started earmarking two routes with two cavalcades simultaneously for his road travel. The decision on which route he will take is chosen at the last moment, multiple sources associated with the exercise told HT.
"Since the PM faces an extremely high degree of threat from terrorists, during his road travels, two routes are readied by his security detail. Traffic is stopped on both routes. One route is taken by the PM and on the second a dummy cavalcade travels," said an official involved in with his travel arrangements. The PM's security is handled by the special protection group.
Earlier too, a second route used to be earmarked for the PM's road travel but only as contingency, the official clarified.
"The PM faces threat from Pakistan-based terror outfits like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad. He is also a top target for operatives of Indian Mujahideen (IM) and Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). His road travels in particular have been under scanner of jehadis. Therefore, an elaborate plan has been drawn to keep the PM safe during his road movements," said a security official requesting anonymity.
Sources say intelligence agencies have come to know about at least two meetings – one held in Nepal between IM and SIMI cadres and another in Pakistan by LeT – wherein Modi was discussed. There is also a compact disc in circulation in Pakistani jehadi circles, which is of an address given by LeT patron Hafiz Mohammad Saeed terming Modi an enemy that needs to be immediately tackled.
Modi has been under constant threat ever since he was declared the BJP's PM candidate in September last year. Within a month, his Patna rally was attacked by a group of jehadis allegedly led by a former SIMI cadre Haidar Ali, who was arrested by the National Investigation Agency in May this year.