Fortress Capital awaits Bush

The Delhi Police have lined up firm security measures in the Capital for US President George W. Bush?s visit beginning March 1.

india Updated: Feb 26, 2006 02:50 IST
Sobhana K.

The Delhi Police have lined up firm security measures in the Capital for US President George W. Bush’s visit beginning March 1. Hundreds of personnel have taken up positions around the Maurya Sheraton hotel — where Bush and all the president's men will put up — and along routes the presidential motorcade will take. Intelligence monitoring has also been taken to the highest level, police department sources said.

As an additional step, a strict vigil is being mounted on chemical shops in the city. All police stations have been issued notices to keep a track of purchases at the chemical shops.

A senior police officer said the step was being taken to prevent manufacture of crude bombs. “Instructions on making chemical bombs are available on the Internet. We have to keep a check on chemical shops,” said the senior police officer.

Buyers of potassium chloride, magnesium dioxide, potassium nitrate and sulphuric acid during this period will have to come up with a valid reason. These chemicals can be stored and sold only by shops having requisite MCD licenses. The police have instructed all the chemical retailers to inform them about persons buying these listed chemicals. Even urea and chemical fertilisers have come under the purview of the order. Although unlicensed shops cannot sell these chemicals, it is not difficult to procure them. Such chemicals are freely available at Tilak Bazaar near Fatehpuri Mosque, most of them cheaply. A litre of sulphuric acid costs Rs 5, while a kg of urea costs only Rs 7.

Heavy police presence was evident in heart of the Capital, where the US president's movements will largely take place. At least 35 companies of extra police personnel will be deployed on roads.

Lights will be installed on the Ridge opposite the US president's hotel. Bush's 250-strong security team will take over the hotel two days before his visit. No vehicle will be allowed within 100 metres of the president's cavalcade. The norm is 15-20 meters.

Double barricades will also be placed along roads Bush's motorcade will take.

First Published: Feb 26, 2006 02:50 IST