To keep an eye on the activities of terrorist sleeper cells, the Maharashtra government has sanctioned Rs 92 crore for the Mumbai police to purchase equipment to monitor cyberspace and cellular phone networks.
The Mumbai police crime branch will get sophisticated surveillance equipment such as the Cell Phone Seizure Kit — to access data from cell phones without contacting the service provider — and the Cyber Threat Detection System that trawls cyberspace for use of certain words and phrases.
Part of the amount will also be used to make the five police control rooms in the city bombproof and fireproof.
“We have decided to upgrade our control rooms as per the recommendations of Ram Pradhan Committee,” said a senior officer at the police commissioner’s office on the condition of anonymity, as he is not authorised to speak to the media. “The money is on its way. Tenders would be be floated.”
The Ram Pradhan Committee had probed the role of the Mumbai police during the 26/11 terror attacks and had recommended fortification of control rooms so that command centres can safely plan and supervise counter offensives.
The police have also decided to install 5,000 CCTV cameras across the city for 24-hour surveillance and Digital Firing Simulators where policemen can practise their shooting skills.
The Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS) is expected to get 18 equipments, most of which will be imported from Israel, to enhance its capabilities. “We want to have 13 world-class BDDS teams, with one deployed in each zone,” the officer said.