Friday, December 05, 2008

Bengaluru Habba put off for security reasons

BS Reporter / Chennai/ Bangalore December 05, 2008, 0:35 IST

Bengaluru Habba, the 20-day cultural extravaganza, has been put off due to security reasons. The government has also decided not to give permission for any events wherein there is a public gathering, like seminars and exhibitions.

Briefing reporters after the cabinet meeting, Karnataka Rural Development and Panchayatraj Minister Shobha Karandlaje, “Keeping security of the people in mind, the cabinet has decided to postpone Bangalore Habba and also not to hold public events for a month.”

The cabinet has cleared setting up of rapid action force (RAF) in the four revenue divisions in the state and has also cleared recruitment of 750 police personnel.

Till the National Security Group (NSG) unit is set up in the state, the cabinet has approved a decision mooted by the state police to bring anti-terror squad (ATS), coastal security patrol CSP), Left-wing anti-terror squad (to fight naxals) and state intelligence bureau under one command headed by an Additional Director General of Police (ADG).

The cabinet has also approved recruitments for the India Reserve Battalion (IRB) and Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP). The state police department had sought approval for recruiting over 700 constables to the India Reserve Battalion (IRB), headquartered in Munirabad in Koppal district.

In addition to 11 units of KSRP and one unit of IRB at Munirabad, the state police plans to create three more units of IRB to be based in Davanagere, Bijapur and Tumkur.

“To set up more IRBs, a budget of Rs 17 crore is required. The central government has promised Rs 12.75 crore and the balance is being contributed by the state government by way of land cost and construction of buildings,” Karandlaje.

In order to modernise the police force, cabinet also gave approval to police department to buy 500 vehicles fitted with global positioning systems (GPS) to be deployed in the state mainly naxal infected areas. Another 100 vehicles is being deployed only for Bangalore city and they will supplement the existing Hoysala patrol vehicles.

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