Fans must surmount 'final' hurdle

Fans must surmount 'final' hurdle

Security before cricket: S Mumbai cordoned off ahead of Patil, Rajapaksa visit

The traffic police have declared the area around the stadium a no-vehicle zone, with some concessions to VVIPs. Force One, the Maharashtra elite counter-terrorist commando unit set up after the 26/11 terror attacks, along the lines of the National Security Guard (NSG), would be part of the massive security cordon.

President Pratibha Patil and her Sri Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa will watch the match at the 32,000-capacity Wankhede Stadium, making the venue more security-sensitive.

Apart from Mumbai police, teams of NSG, Rapid Action Force, State Reserve Police Force and Quick Response Team are maintaining strict vigil at the stadium. Airspace over and around the stadium has been declared ‘No Flying Zone’.

“Over 180 CCTVs have been installed by the authorities inside and outside the stadium and a special police control room has been set up to keep a watch on the spectators,” DCP (Operations) Rajkumar Vhatkar told reporters.

CISF personnel will frisk spectators entering stadium and SRPF will guard the periphery. Neighbouring Thane and Navi Mumbai police personnel will back up the city police.  Helicopters for surveillance, Marine Commandos and Indian Naval base in South Mumbai will be on standby. All entry points from the sea, from where the Pakistani terrorists had sneaked into the metropolis on November 26, 2008, will be sealed on the day.

A multi-layer security will be in place around two-km radius area of the stadium during the match.  Maharashtra’s home minister R R Patil personally visited the stadium to review the security measures. “I have reviewed the security arrangements... We have taken all the measures to ensure that everything goes well,” Patil said. Over 3,000 policemen would guard the ground on the day of the match.