Demand for private guards increases in Uttar Pradesh capital

December 9th, 2008 - 6:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Dec 9 (IANS) The requirement for private, armed security guards has increased manifold in the Uttar Pradesh capital in wake of the Nov 26 Mumbai terror attacks.Besides malls and luxury hotels, other businesses have also augmented security, fearing similar attacks.

“We have registered a growth of 40 percent for armed guards. Our clients include jewellery shops, head offices of various telecommunication companies, luxury hotels, malls, and the like,” says Armaan Khan of Federal Securities.

He said his company was now actually facing a shortage of guards as most companies have doubled their requirements.

The rates for armed guards also differ depending on their experience and background.

“While a civilian armed guard is available for Rs.4,000 to Rs.10,000, depending on the fire arm carried by him, ex-army men cost between Rs.7,000 to Rs.15,000″, Khan said, adding the demand for ex-army men was quite high currently.

Besides, he said high profile personalities are also roping in retired National Security Guard (NSG) and Special Protection Group (SPG) personnel besides Black Cat commandos for security purposes.

“As a general practice, the commandos do not have a long career in this line and are shifted to other responsibilities as they grow older. A majority of them prefer to take retirement and join us”, Khan said.

The rates of retired commandos range between Rs.30,000 and Rs.50,000 per month depending upon the arms carried by them, he added.

Besides this, the demand of electronic gadgets has also increased surprisingly after the attack.

“The sale of closed circuit TV cameras (CCTVs), door frame metal detectors, hand held metal detectors and other such devices has increased by 60 percent in the past ten days and we are actually facing a shortage”, Khan, who also deals in these equipment, said.

The demand is mainly from malls, hotels, factories and corporate houses, he added.

Meanwhile, the city police has also increased vigilance near public places.

“Besides intensifying patrolling, we have also installed police pickets with armed personnel near malls, hotels and other public places,” Lucknow police chief Akhil Kumar told IANS.

The Taj Hotel in the city has also upgraded its security.

“Besides deputing armed security men at various points, we have provided guards at the gate with mirrors to check vehicles”, a senior official of the hotel informed IANS on the condition of anonymity.

Over 170 persons, including foreign nationals, were killed in the Nov 26 terror attacks in Mumbai when terrorists targeted the Taj Mahal hotel, Oberoi Trident, and other prominent landmarks.

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