Delhi set to receive Obama

November 7th, 2010 - 10:56 am ICT by IANS  

Barack Obama New Delhi, Nov 7 (IANS) Delhi Sunday was all set to welcome US President Barack Obama on the second leg of his four-day India visit.

Obama, who arrived in Mumbai Saturday, is expected to reach Delhi at 3.30 p.m. Sunday. He leaves for Indonesia Tuesday.

In the national capital, Obama will first visit Humayun’s Tomb, a World Heritage site. He will offer tributes at the Rajghat, Mahatma Gandhi’s memorial, hold talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and address India’s parliament Monday.

According to an official, a five-tier security will cover the US president, with the two layers closest to him comprising US security personnel. The other three layers would consist of the elite National Security Guard (NSG) commandos, Indian paramilitary forces and Delhi Police.

While NSG commandos and guards will be positioned at the ITC Maurya, where Obama will be staying, Quick Response Teams (QRT) of the Delhi Police will be deployed all along the routes he will be taking.

“There would be about 250 NSG commandos as well as NSG guards camping at the ITC Maurya Hotel, where Obama will be staying. NSG snipers will be also be deployed on high rise buildings around the hotel and also at Maurya. Machans (watch-towers) would be put up opposite the hotel with sharpshooters atop them,” the official told IANS.

This is because the hotel is bang opposite a dense green area called the Ridge and US secret service agents had expressed apprehension that the place could hide trouble makers.

Sardar Patel Marg, the road on which ITC Maurya is located, would be lit up at night with floodlights, authorities said.

Besides several thousand Delhi Police personnel, 15 companies of paramilitary forces will be on duty.

“There would be more than 50 QRT deployed around the capital. Traffic restrictions will be in place Monday along the routes the US president will travel, and the roads are likely to be closed for traffic movement of the US president,” he said.

The parliament security officials have asked Delhi Police to carry out checking of vehicles and people entering the parliament Monday.

The movement of heavy vehicles on the stretch of National Highway 8 linking Delhi to Gurgaon will be restricted Sunday afternoon to facilitate smooth movement of Obama’s motorcade after his arrival in Delhi.

“We will follow the usual protocol to facilitate vehicular movement of VVIPs. When Obama arrives, restrictions on traffic movement will come into place,” Special Commissioner (Traffic) Ajay Chadha told IANS.

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