New Delhi, Dec 03: Special Protection Group (Amendment) Bill has been passed in the Rajya Sabha. The amendment Bill has several changes and one of them is that the family members of a former prime minister who don’t reside with him at his official residence will not be guarded by SPG commandos anymore.
Further the amendment also says that those who reside with him at his allotted accommodation will get security cover of the elite force only for five years.
The Home Ministry says that it is looking into a letter written by the aviation ministry to withdraw privileges to Robert Vadra which exempts him from being frisked. The aviation ministry wrote it’s second letter reminding the home ministry to withdraw this privilege given to Vadra. After not having responded to the first letter, the Home Ministry now says that it is looking into the matter and an order would be issued soon. The aviation ministry in its two letters had told the home ministry that since Vadra does not hold any Constitutional post he cannot be given the privilege of not being frisked. read more
There has been a hue and cry over the security aspect of Narendra Modi and several questions have been raised as to why he is not provided the same sort of security which a Prime Minister or a Sonia Gandhi are provided.
C D Sahay former Research and Analysis Wing chief says that the SPG act came into force following the assassination of Indira Gandhi. When it was packaged, I remember clearly that it had become a family specific thing. In short the SPG was created for a particular family only. Although there were no other leaders at that time who faced the same kind of threat at that time, it is unfortunate that over the years it was never reviewed and continued to remain position and not person specific. This continued and the likes of Deve Gowda, I K Gujral, Chandrashekhar and their families also availed the benefit of such security, Sahay says.
There has been a raging debate over the security cover for BJP’ Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and the blasts at Patna has made this a talking point. When Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said that SPG security is not necessary for Modi, he would need to answer why the government amended the SPG Act two years back to extend the SPG cover for Sonia and her family members.
The demand was that the Special Protection Group should be deployed for Modi in order to enhance the security of the man who is the top of the hit list of every terrorist outfit. However unfortunately there is politics attached to the security of a leader. Continue reading “SPG for Modi- The politics behind it”
The government of India today said that there were 15 people in the country who are being provided Z Plus security and over 500 commandos of the National Security Guards were deployed for this work.
In India security is divided in Z plus, Z and Y category. However in the case of some like the Prime Minister, the security is taken care of the Special Protection Group. In India, the Prime Minister, Sonia Gandhi and her son, Rahul Gandhi are under the SPG. The category of the security is dependant on the threat perception to the person. In most cases it is the Chief Minister, ministers in the cabinet ranks, Judges of the High Court and Supreme Court and some bureucrats who get Z and Z plus security.
The Z Plus security has a security cover of 36 personnel while the Z category has 11 and the Y 2.
The category of security is under the discretion of the Home Ministry of India. The threat perception is taken into account and the inputs are based on what the Intelligence Bureau has to give. The category of security can also be withdrawn to a person depending on the threat perception.
Apart from the SPG protection it is the Z plus category of security which is the highest level. Persons under this category of security are entitled to round-the-clock personal security officials, 28 National Security Guard commandos at all times, an escort, a pilot and tailing vehicles, Cobra commandos and 12 homeguards. While this is provided by the Home Ministry of India, the state governments on their own could also provide their bit of security to these VVIPs based on the threat perception.
In India there are currently 15 persons under the Z plus category.