NDMC to install smart poles with ‘panic buttons’ at schools, Metro stations, markets
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NDMC to install smart poles with ‘panic buttons’ at schools, Metro stations, markets

NDMC officials said the ‘panic button’ will help people contact officials at the civic agency’s command centre in cases of emergency.

delhi Updated: Jan 14, 2019 15:45 IST
Vibha Sharma
Vibha Sharma
Hindustan TImes, New Delhi
NDMC,smart poles,panic buttons
NDMC had earlier installed 55 smart poles in the city which also serve as air quality monitors. (Mohd Zakir/HT File )

The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) said it will install 625 ‘smart poles’ equipped with ‘panic buttons’ near gates of 43 school buildings, 16 Metro stations and prominent markets and other sensitive spots by December 2019 as a means of additional security.

NDMC officials said the ‘panic button’ will help people contact officials at the civic agency’s command centre in cases of emergency. The CCTV cameras on these poles will be equipped to revolve 360 degrees and will be able capture footage of up to the range of 100 metres.

The information collected from these smart poles would be sent to the NDMC command centre at Palika Kendra, senior NDMC officials familiar with the project said.

“The moment someone presses the panic button, an alert will be sent to the command centre which works round-the-clock. Our officers at the command centre will communicate with the person through speakers on the smart pole. There will be facility for two-way communication through this button as well. We will then help the person depending on their grievance,” said a senior official.

NDMC chairman Naresh Kumar said, “It has been observed that areas outside some Metro stations become dark and desolate at night. We will install these smart poles keeping in mind the safety of passengers. We have 17 metro station gates in our jurisdiction and one pole will be erected outside each gate.”

“Likewise, we have plans to install these poles to beef security outside schools and prominent markets such as Sarojini Nagar, Bengali Market, Netaji Nagar, BK Dutt Colony, Bengali Market and Gole Market,” said Kumar.

The command centre will store data from these poles for at least a month. The poles will also have smart LED lights, Wi-Fi access points, air quality monitoring system and will also function as cellphone towers.

“The LED light can be remotely switched on or off. We can also set up time schedule for these. For example, after midnight some lights can be powered down to 50-60%. We can monitor and decide depending on requirement,” said a senior NDMC official.

Last year, the civic agency had conducted a safety audit through an NGO, Safetipin, and identified 16 ‘dark spots’ including those near Shivaji Stadium and backside of Sarojini Nagar.

“This prompted us to get into action and we decided to improve our streetlight infrastructure. We replaced them with LEDs for better illumination and energy saving. Their numbers were also increased from 16,500 to 17,500. After completing the process, we got another audit conducted from the same NGO and it has given us a clearance certificate,” said the NDMC official.

As part of the Centre’s Smart City Mission, NDMC had installed 55 energy saving smart poles on busy roads at Connaught Place, Baba Kharak Singh Marg, Sansad Marg, Janpath, Kasturba Gandhi Marg, Barakhamba Road, Tolstoy Marg and nearby areas last year.

“But that time, our focus was use them as smart metres to monitor air quality. After the successful implementation of that project, the civic agency decided to use the facility to beef up security in its areas,” said the NDMC official.

First Published: Jan 14, 2019 13:06 IST