6 yrs after 26/11, common man oblivious of security

6 yrs after 26/11, common man oblivious of security

Six years after the 26/11 attack, security and intelligence apparatus of the maximum city have been beefed up considerably but common man is yet to become part of the process of maintaining security.

Security experts and intelligence officials said given the fact that Mumbai had always remained on the radar of terror groups, it is imperative that people take part in the process to ensure security.

The terror attacks from November 26 to 29, 2008, exposed vulnerability of the security and intelligence apparatus. Ten Pakistani youth, carrying Kalashnikov rifles, grenades and bombs, sailed from Karachi, traversed through the Arabian Sea, reached the shores of Mumbai and launched the attacks, killing nearly 166 persons and injuring about 300. Among the victims were policemen and NSG commandos.

The lone terrorist caught, Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, was tried and hanged till death on November 21, 2012.

Since the dastardly attacks, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has been strengthened, a hub of National Security Guard (NSG) and Force One, a commando force, have been set up, the Maharashtra Intelligence Academy (MIA) has started functioning. All police stations across Maharashtra now have dedicated Anti-Terror Cells (ATCs).

Quick Reaction Teams (QRTs) are also in place. The coastal security too has been beefed up significantly. “However, there need to be more awareness among the public. We need to follow basic security drills, help the cops during security check-ups, people should check below the seats while travelling in buses and trains and report unidentified objects or any suspicious activity,” said an official attached to the State Intelligence Department (SID).

“We must follow four Ps– prepare, protect, prevent and pursue,” a senior police official said. While Kasab was sentenced to death, two other Indian accused — Fahim Ansari and Sabauddin Shaikh — stand acquitted.

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