Leaving nothing to chance

Safety measures

Leaving nothing to chance

Most malls across the City have spruced up their security measures considering that thousands of people visit them on a daily basis. 

Taking stock of the vulnerability of the situation, Mantri Square Mall and Orion Mall in Brigade Gateway, have decided to step up their security by introducing sniffer dogs to check two-wheelers and four-wheelers that enter the malls. 

This, they believe, will ease the possible fear of a bomb scare. This measure was taken after a bomb went off near a political party office in Malleswaram a few months ago.  These security measures have drawn mixed response from regular mall goers. They feel that the City is expanding at a fast pace and much needs to be done to ensure safety in public places. 

Aravind KP, a consultant with a private firm, says that although there are several metal detectors, the fast-paced growth of the City gives room for concern about security. 

“It’s only during a crisis that organisations wake up. It’s time that public spaces are well-equipped,  especially when they are dealing with the lives of so many people,” he explains and adds, “On weekends, it’s difficult to keep track of what’s happening.
”While one can’t be assured of safety, these measures give people a sense of security. “Since I stay close to Orion Mall, I frequent the place at least twice a week. With the high footfalls, one can never be assured of safety. During one of my recent visits to the malls, I observed that employing sniffer dogs enhances and ensures security to shoppers,” says Prabhavati S, a professional.

 In the past, many of the bomb scares have been at malls and Prabhavati feels that being caught unaware, at the public places when shopping, is a nightmare. Prabhavati recollects that she was in a mall a couple of years ago, when there was a bomb scare. She says, “At least it’s good that precautionary measures are being taken to prevent any incident. I am yet to see sniffer dogs being employed at other places but it’s important that others follow suit.”

But there are others who feel that this exercise is a monotonous and time-consuming one. Rachel Varghese, a teacher in a City college, says that although it may be beneficial, she prefers staying away from malls. “It’s such a hassle. For those who fear dogs, it’s really a bother. Although, I understand that it has been done from the security point of view, I have decided to steer clear of visiting malls,” she confides. 

Looks like the malls management don’t want to take any chances and are taking all precautions to ensure safety in malls. “Immediately after the incident (Malleswaram bomb scare), we thought sniffer dogs were a necessity. We are just two-and-a-half kilometres away from the spot where the blast took place and the next target could very well have been a high-density place.

 These sniffer dogs are better than a device in sniffing trouble,” says Captain Gautham Chathanat, manager – security (Orion Mall). He adds that sniffer dogs have been taken from a private firm. While some customers complain of it being a time-consuming process, the manager says that they trying their best to make it a hassle-free process. 

Snehal Mantri, director-marketing and HR of the Mantri Group, says, “At a public space, there’s always a threat to security. Hence, as a safety measure, we decided to deploy sniffer dogs. It is done with the idea of making customers feel secure and the response we have received has been positive.”

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