The city will get its first batch of 216 Force One commandos — a specialised counter-insurgency force — by October 10.
Force One is being raised by the state following the 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai and the timing of stationing it in the city is significant with Diwali on October 17.
On October 29, 2005, two days before Diwali, when thousands of people were busy shopping, three synchronised explosions ripped through the Pahargunj and Saroji Nagar markets in Delhi. The blasts killed 62 people and injured 210 others.
Last Sunday, the US issued a travel advisory warning its citizens about the possibility of terrorist attacks in India during the festive season.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of the special force, S. Jagannathan said the first batch of commandos would be stationed at the Kalina police grounds, before they move to their new headquarters at Goregaon. The special operations headquaters spread on a 30-acre plot will be shared by Force One and the National Security Guards (NSG).
The Force One team, the DIG said, would be the second respondent to a crisis situation, the first being the Quick Response Team (QRT) commandos. Mumbai will have 500 QRT commandos by next year.
“The Force One will be a self-sufficient force and can be compared to the best in the world,” Jagannathan said. The special team will function under its own command and will have its firepower and equipment while engaged in an operation. The commandos will step in when the resistance spills out of QRT’s control. The Force One will also have its own vehicles — one for every team of five commandos and one officer— transport and logistics, carriers and ambulances. The commandos are equipped with weapons of different caliber, including assault rifles, communication sets, snipers, night vision devices and protective gears.
The force will be kept in battle-ready mode 24x7, by splitting it into three groups and one group constantly on the vigil.