Cops ill-equipped to guard 104km coastline in city
Navi Mumbai is said to be one of the safest cities of the country to live in. However, looking at the costal security of the city, it can be said that it is a vulnerable area and could easily be targeted by terrorists.
The length of the Navi Mumbai coastline is 104km. While 60km of the coastline is surrounded by the Arabian sea, the remaining 44 km are along creeks. However, the Navi Mumbai special branch, which is responsible for guarding this huge coastline, does not have sufficient equipment and weapons.
According to sources from the department, for patrolling in the border areas they have just seven speed boats.
They have been given just 14 bulletproof jackets and 9 life jackets to fend for themselves. They have just eight rifles.
The scenario is worse when it comes to man power. The department has just 77 officials including 15 sub inspectors.
Navi Mumbai police commissionerate has two coastal police stations- NRI and Mora. However, they are responsible only for maintaining law and order situation on those areas and not for patrolling and safeguarding the coastlines.
“It is really alarming that Navi Mumbai police have neither sufficient manpower nor required equipment to guard a huge coastline. Taking advantage of these loopholes, terrorists can easily enter the city from other countries and attack the residents. At a time when massive projects involving crores of rupees are being planned here, little has been done for ensuring safety of the residents,” said Rajesh Kadu, 51, an activist from Uran.
“We wonder how many kilometres the police can cover with just seven speed boats in a day. Forget the safety of the residents, how will the police fight terrorists with 14 bulletproof jackets? All of us know what happened during the Pathankot terror attacks owing to the non-availability of such jackets,” said Rashmi Patil, 45, a resident of Nerul.
A senior police officer from the special branch informed Hindustan Times that discussions are being held for getting more bulletproof jackets, speed boats and other equipment for costal security, but nothing has been finalised so far.
It is really alarming to note that the Navi Mumbai police have neither sufficient manpower nor required equipment to guard a huge coastline. Little has been done to ensure safety of residents RAJESH KADU, actvist