New Delhi, Aug 14:
Security forces were on high alert in the Indian capital ahead of Independence Day celebrations on Monday, with some 45,000 personnel deployed across the city, officials said on Sunday.
Besides securing the Red Fort and its environs, security has also been stepped up all across the capital, in particular shopping areas, malls and places where people gather in large numbers.
A ground-to-air security apparatus is in place around the 17th century Red Fort from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the nation for a third time, the officials said.
Police barriers have come up on scores of roads in Delhi to check vehicles and motorists.
Residential areas facing the Red Fort have been sanitized, an official said. Both in Delhi and neighbouring areas, police have checked hotels and guest houses.
The Mughal monument and areas within a five-kilometre radius is being covered by about 9,000 security personnel from Delhi Police, paramilitary forces and the National Security Guard (NSG).
On Monday, scores of VVIPs will attend the Red Fort event. They will include senior political figures, diplomats and military personnel besides thousands of civilians including school students.
Besides ground personnel, an air defence mechanism has been put in place in and around the venue.
The main event during India’s 70th Independence Day celebration on Monday will be held at the Red Fort.
Over 500 CCTVs have been installed in and around Red Fort. High-resolution cameras have been mounted on the sprawling monument.
The police have got some 3,000 trees trimmed in the venue keeping security considerations in view.
Security officials have also been deployed at major markets, airport, railway stations, the inter-state bus terminals, Delhi Metro stations and places of strategic importance.
Road leading to Red Fort — Netaji Subhash Marg, S.P. Mukherjee Marg, Chandni Chowk Road, Nisad Raj Marg and Link Road — will be out of bounds for general traffic for four hours from 5 a.m. on Monday. (IANS)