Narendra Modi
Narendra ModiReuters

Prime Minister Narendra Modi could be facing a serious terror threat on his first Independence Day Speech on 15 August, as per information collected by intelligence agencies, who have warned that "the threat to Modi is greater than what any prime minister has faced in the last two decades".

Intelligence officers have told The Times of India that the "PM could be attacked while on the move". However, they believe that Modi is safe given his impregnable security.

A source from an intelligence agency told TOI that "terrorists are also exploring a 26/11-type firing attack on the occasion, but with the security the PM has, terrorists cannot reach anywhere close to him".

However, the police will be ensuring a water-tight security for Modi given the threat. "The Delhi Police along with other security agencies is going to keep a hawk's eye on the Capital on August 15. This time, the security arrangements have been extremely tight owing to the threat perception to the PM," a police officer told The Hindu.

It is not just a direct terror threat to Modi that officials are worried about. This Independence Day, the Capital is expected to be on alert, as intelligence agencies have warned the Home Ministry of possible bomb attacks by outfits such as LeT and SIMI in busy markets in the city and on the outskirts to mar I-Day celebrations.

Given the serious security concerns, here's what will be in place in the Capital on I-Day next week –

  • Sharpshooters and spotters will take positions on buildings leading to the Red Fort to keep a watch on the Prime Minister's convoy. They will also be positioned atop houses facing the Red Fort to keep check as Modi delivers his speech on the podium.
  • No vehicle will be allowed to run within a kilometer from Modi's envoy. The road through which the convoy will pass will be closed 15 minutes in advance.
  • Around 20,000 security personnel from the National Security Guard (NSG), the paramilitary forces and from the Delhi Police team will be on security duty. Security personnel will be stationed at every 50 meters as part of a multi-layered security plan.
  • Heavy security will be deployed around Raisina Hill.
  • Airspace will be closed and an air defence system will be in place around Red Fort at a 2-km radius.
  • Anti-aircraft weapons and mobile quick response teams will be stationed strategically.
  • SWAT teams of the Special Cell, bomb-disposal squads and dog squads will be on alert.
  • 200 CCTV cameras will be installed around red Fort, much higher than 72 CCTV cameras used earlier on the occasion.
  • The police have already verified identities of residents living in the vicinity of Red Fort.