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Punjab VIPs subletting their security guards
Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 18
Several protected persons in Punjab have got more security guards allocated to them than they are actually eligible for. Many of them have even sublet these security men to industrialists and real-estate developers.

According to an ongoing reassessment of the threat perception to the protected persons in the state, several politicians and police officers have been found to have sublet their security guards to businessmen.

Some senior police officers have reportedly sublet their security guards to real estate developers in Mohali and Kharar. The practice has also been prevalent at places like Ludhiana and Jalandhar. Some SSPs and Commissioners of police have also “obliged” industrialists. This was at best an informal arrangement, sources said.

Some politicians have also been found enjoying the protection of security personnel earmarked for police officers. A politician of the Majha region, who lost the recent elections, was obliged by a police officer whose relative is also a Congress man. The Congress leader has 25 security guards attached to him.

Meanwhile, 1,500 personnel are slated to be withdrawn from security duty by tomorrow.

Ten per cent strength (7,000 personnel) of the total police force in the state is engaged in security duties. The axe has now fallen on most of the former DGPs. Most of the former DGPs had 30 to 50 men engaged with them. This was because of the fact that they had managed to carry on with the security cover provided to them as serving DGPs.

The survey revealed that in many cases the security guards allotted to VVIPs had been engaged in menial tasks, including driving, cooking and gardening.

The government has also withdrawn security from a number of Akali jathedars who are not active politically or are no longer on the threat list. Guards have been also withdrawn from some serving and former Beopar Mandal chiefs.

Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal has directed the police to plug all loopholes in the grant of security by multiple agencies. Now the Security Wing alone will allocate security guards on the basis of threat perception. Following the direction, SSPs and Commandants have withdrawn security guards allocated by them and submitted compliance reports in that regard.

Efforts are on to make the security assessment exercise transparent and establish a new benchmark. The Deputy CM has directed the police to conduct an impartial assessment of the threat perception to all protectees, including Congress leaders.





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