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'PM security lapse due to communication gap'

A probe by the Kerala police shows the lapse was due to a communication slip-up between driver and pilot officer.

india Updated: Nov 03, 2006 13:19 IST

A high-level probe by Kerala police into the security lapse during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit has found that the route-deviation of the motorcade was due to a slip-up in communication between the pilot officer and the driver.

The report of Kerala's Additional Deputy General of Police (Intelligence) Jacob Punnoose said it was not for the first time that private vehicles and drivers were engaged during VVIP visits.

The report, submitted by Punnoose to DGP Raman Srivastava late on Thursday night, did not recommend any action against top police officials as the purpose of the probe was "fact-finding, and not fault-finding", official sources said.

The probe found that the confusion in communication between the cavalcade's pilot officer and the driver caused deviation of the pilot vehicle in the wrong direction instead of proceeding to the scheduled route to the Raj Bhavan.

On the vital issue of engaging a taxi driver for the pilot car, the report said there were precedents of private hands being engaged during visits of VVIPs.

Hiring private vehicles and engaging experienced drivers during VVIP visits had been a practice followed for long, it said, adding that this could not be seen as a major procedural deviation.

The report said that the probe was an effort to find out what led to seurity lapse by gathering information from the persons involved in the security arrangement and execution during the Prime Minister's visit.

First Published: Nov 03, 2006 13:19 IST