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Bengal puts poll riders on IPL security

The state government today made it clear it would be able to provide security for an IPL match only if it is held three days earlier or three days after a poll date in the state.

In West Bengal, Lok Sabha polls will be held on three days — April 30, May 7 and May 13.

The state has already informed the Centre it would be able to provide security for the May 4 match at Eden Gardens only if the Centre gave it 30 companies of additional paramilitary force.

“We usually deploy 3,000-4,000 policemen for match at Eden Gardens. But in view of the attack on cricketers in Lahore, the number will be 6,000 to 7,000. So the IPL schedule has to be redrawn in such a way that no match is held three days before or three days after a poll day,” said state home secretary Ardhendu Sen on Monday.

Sen also said the state would get a quick response team comprising personnel from naval commando force Marcos as well as commandos from the state police. This unit, meant for tackling possible terror attacks in Kolkata and Haldia ports, will be stationed near the Kolkata port. “Discussions are now going on with the Centre on the issue,” he said.

The state also plans to raise a State Industrial Security Force on the lines of the CISF to guard public buildings, vital installations, and even some private buildings in Bengal.

“The Centre has asked us to raise the force, but it involves a lot of money. We are working on it. Once raised, it can be used for guarding private buildings too,” Sen said.

He said of the 2200 km border between India and Bangladesh, 1,800 km has been fenced.

“It is difficult to put up the fence in the remaining 400 km because most of the border where the fence was to be put up is on water bodies and low-lying land. At some places villagers are also resisting the fencing,” Sen said.

source - expressindia.com
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