The Ghaziabad police will provide additional security to the outer cordon of the Hindon airbase and also enhance the patrolling by bikes and PCR vans. The move comes after Friday’s trespass incident and also because a major portion of the outer boundary wall is currently being constructed.
The Ghaziabad police said nearly 10km of the 27km outer periphery of the airbase is motorable road.
“The work is complete in the non-motorable area. Our PCR vans and patrol bikes will keep enhanced vigil in the outer area to prevent any further trespassing incident,” said Ashish Srivastava, circle officer (border).
Around 1.30am on May 6, Sonu Jatav, who hails from Indrapuri in nearby Loni, had allegedly ventured inside the airbase , suspectedly from Nistoli village area behind the airbase. He allegedly reached till the technical area where he was spotted by security personnel Raj Kumar.
Sonu, in a surprise attack, allegedly injured the personnel and escaped. The 21-year-old man was nabbed around 7.15am and the airbase went into heightened security alert mode and set into motion the standard operational procedures, including the closure of two schools inside the base.
“The security was already in place and the man was spotted in the first instance. The boundary wall construction is in full swing and it is expected to be complete before the monsoon,” said Group Captain Sandeep Mehta, public relations officer, Hindon airbase.
Under the heightened security on Friday morning, the units from the army and the civil police were roped in besides the internal security at the airbase. Some of the aircraft were also flown out as part of the dispersal plan.
Official sources said post the January attack at the Pathankot airbase in Punjab, various airbases across the country have been told to conduct surprise checks. The Hindon airbase too has carried out inspections and security audits to check the alertness and preparedness of the security apparatus.
After the Pathankot incident, the air force also issued shoot-at-sight orders against intruders in 20 of its front-line bases, including Hindon, in the western sector. The sensitive airbase at Hindon houses C-130 Super Hercules special operations plane, C-17 heavy lifters and Mi-17 transport choppers. Hindon base is vital as it provides cover to the national capital.
Sonu is stated to be mentally unstable and he allegedly fled his house on Wednesday. After he was handed over to civil police on Friday evening, he was booked under provisions of the The Official Secrets Act, 1923, and also under sections 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 332 (Voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty) of the IPC at Sahibabad police station.
“He is booked under some non-bailable sections. However, he may be able to procure bail on medical grounds. His family told us that he underwent nearly two years of psychiatric treatment. It is suspected that he sneaked in from the rear of the airbase,” a police officer said.