Demand of bulletproof cars on rise, ahead of general elections in India

March 7th, 2009 - 3:34 pm ICT by ANI  

By Sumit Khanna
Jalandhar, Mar 7 (ANI): Demand for bulletproof cars has gone up in India ahead of the Indian general elections.
The increasing terror attacks have now forced the political leaders to seek shelter behind bullet proof cars.
The bulletproof vehicle makers are cashing in on the fear among the politicians. They are making a good business ahead of the general elections. The makers are expecting a double increase in their business this year.
The Sobtis in Jalandhar are armouring cars of the politicians in their Laggar Industries” workshop. This year comparatively they are armouring more cars than the last elections. Some cars have already been delivered whereas some are still under the process of getting armored in the workshop.
“In the last elections, we armored around 6-7 cars whereas this year we have done 10 of them. There is an increase. As more and more people are getting to know about these bulletproof cars, the demands are increasing,” said Sanchit Sobti, Owner, Sobti Steels, Jalandhar.
The vehicles initially were mainly Government Ambassadors but gradually gave way to more expensive models like Mitsubishi Pajeros, Scorpios, Monteros and Land cruisers.
Before a car gets armored, one needs to take permission from the Intelligence Bureau. Although getting a vehicle armored is quite costly but for the politicians the prices are affordable. Mostly the politicians belonging to the states slightly prone to political violence demand for these bulletproof cars.
“The demands are mostly from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab and Chattisgarh. These are the main states from where we have received cars. The political backgrounds of these states are comparatively strong. Therefore demands would be more from such states,” Sobti added.
The armouring process itself is no mean task. It involves ripping up a vehicle, down to the undercarriage, and rebuilding it after armouring it with steel plates. Bulletproofing a vehicle can take two-three months. (ANI)

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