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Mumbai: Suspect’s sketch released after ‘suspicious’ men seen near navy base

mumbai Updated: Sep 23, 2016 09:13 IST
Saurabh M Joshi
Saurabh M Joshi
Hindustan Times
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The police released this sketch based on a description by one of the students.

Mumbai was put on high alert and security at important points along the city’s coast was beefed up after schoolchildren spotted suspicious men near the naval base at Uran on Thursday.

The police released the sketch of a man based on a description by one of the students.

The port zone of the Mumbai police stepped up security at all landing points along the city’s coast to look out for suspicious activity.

A policeman keeps vigil at the Badhwar Park, Colaba on Thursday. (Anshuman Poyrekar/HT PHOTO)

“We have declared a state of alert in the city following the incident and requisite steps are being taken to secure it,” said Deven Bharti, joint commissioner (law and order) of the Mumbai police.

All police stations in the city were ordered to tighten security at vital installations in their jurisdictions and set up nakabandis at designated spots.

Local crime branch units were also put on alert.

They kept an eye on the movements of suspicious people and conducted combing operations in hotels and lodges across Mumbai to verify the identities of people who have booked rooms in the past few days.

The coastal wing of the Mumbai police deployed 14 speedboats to patrol the coast.

They coordinated closely with the coast guard and the Indian Navy, which have jurisdiction over the deep seas.

The jurisdiction of Mumbai police’s port zone extends to 12 nautical miles from the coast.

Read: Mumbai: Navy on alert after schoolkids spot ‘suspicious men’, NSG teams deployed

The anti-terrorism squad was also alerted and asked to keep tabs on any possible chatter about attacks on vital installations in Mumbai or Navi Mumbai.

The local police instructed their network of informers to be on alert as well.

Officials said security at the city’s entry and exit points was tightened and that every vehicle entering the city was being scanned.

The police also concentrated on securing crowded places, for which they teamed up with private security agencies.

“Precautionary measures are being taken and all coastal police stations have been told to step up their presence in the sea in order to keep an eye on any suspicious movements in the waters,” said Sunita Thackray, deputy commissioner of police (port zone).

Officials said the primary focus was on the eastern coastline of Mumbai, which faces Uran and Navi Mumbai.