Deshmukh promised to tighten securityDecember 4th, 2008 - 4:38 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Dec 4 (IANS) In an open letter to the citizens of the country a day before he stepped down as the chief minister of Maharashtra, Vilasrao Deshmukh said he would take steps to enhance coastal security of the state and assured of results in a couple of months.The letter was published in all leading dailies Thursday, the day Deshmukh resigned after drawing flak from all quarters for mishandling the security of the state leading to the brazen terror strike on Mumbai Nov 26.
Announcing his decision to quit, Deshmukh said Thursday that he had resigned “in deference to popular anguish” following the Mumbai terror attack and was not making an “ignominious exit”.
However, in the published letter he said: “I wish to share with you that the government has already initiated effective steps for enhancing the security and safety apparatus. You will see positive results in all following matters within 3-4 months.”
Among the various steps enlisted to tighten the security of the state were setting up of 12 new marine police stations, crack commando force, State Industrial Security Force and modernization of police force.
Maharashtra government has been accused of failing to fully operationalise Marine police stations in the state leading to the security breach on the coastline of Mumbai, from where terrorists are believed to have swept into the city unchecked.
In the letter Deshmukh said “setting up of a Crack Commando Force (1 battalion) to be called Maharashtra Security Guards on the lines of NSG (National Security Guard), with modern equipment and armament” was also on priority.
Besides, “modernisation of police force and provide them funds for this purpose on a war footing and a committee under my chairmanship shall review these programmes”.
The measure was announced following the scenes of Mumbai policemen carrying .303 rifles putting up a brave fight against the terrorists firing indiscriminately from sophisticated AK-47s.
Fourteen policemen, including the chief of the elite Anti-Terror Squad Hemant Karkare, fell to the bullets of the terrorists in the initial hours of the Nov 26 mayhem.