Mumbai, March 26 (IANS) Over 10,000 police personnel in uniform and plainclothes and the Indian Air Force will be drafted for security during the final of the cricket World Cup to be played at the Wankhede Stadium here next Saturday (April 2), officials said.
Top police and civil officials, along with cricket officials, Saturday checked out the security arrangements at the stadium in south Mumbai.
Around 10,000 policemen and officers shall be deployed for one of the biggest security operations mounted in the city in recent months. They will be aided by personnel from the Anti-Terrorist Squad, Dog Squad and plainclothes personnel who will mingle with the crowds.
Mumbai Police has recommended to Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan to consider declaring a public holiday in the city for security reasons.
Police officials pointed out that if a public holiday is declared April 2, another 1,000 police officials could be spared for the cricket match’s security.
They also noted that on an average, nearly 8 million people travel north-south and in the reverse direction daily through suburban trains, BEST buses and cabs and private vehicles. A large number of that population would stay indoors if a holiday is declared.
However, an official source in the state government said though a suggestion has been received, no decision has been taken in the matter yet.
The police request has been made in the backdrop of reports suggesting that some terrorist elements may infiltrate the stadium as spectators and attempt to create disturbances during the match.
Besides the general public, the match will attract film stars, top politicians, industrialists, other celebrities and a number of foreigners.