April 1, 2009 3:19:20 am
After scouting several areas in and around the city along with the state police,the National Security Guard (NSG) officials have reached an understanding to set up the states NSG hub on a 23-acre land at Tungwe in Marol that is currently Maharashtra Police property,Mumbai Police Commissioner Hasan Gafoor said today.
Several areas were surveyed and considered for the NSG hub including places in Kalyan and Dahanu. However,we have reached the final understanding that the NSG will be given a 23-acre area in Marol that is part of police property. We have given our No Objection to the state government,which will allot the land to the NSG. While the NSG had initially demanded a 150-acre plot for setting up the base,it was just not feasible, said Gafoor.
The new NSG chief NPS Aulakh was in the city a week ago to finalise the site selection. Two NSG officials have been permanently posted in the city to liaise with the city police for the entire process.
The other areas surveyed might have been larger,but they were located at a great distance from the airport. Those were not found suitable as the distance from the airport would have hampered the NSGs response in times of any crisis, said Gafoor.
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The site finalized is adjacent to the Maharashtra Police Training School in Marol,and is close to the domestic as well as the international airports.
According to the Mumbai Police,the NSG is keen on setting up the hub before the monsoon sets in.
The NSG is very keen on starting construction as soon as possible,since it wont be possible once the rains set in, said Gafoor.
Initially,land in Kalyan and Palghar were surveyed as likely sites for the NSG hub,besides land at the Juhu aerodrome. The Kalyan land was in possession of the defence forces and was part of a war-time aerodrome,while the 450-acre area in Palghar was ruled out due to its distance from the city. Land at the Juhu aerodrome was also considered,but it was part of the airport land.
Meanwhile,Gafoor stated that the police were completing the last stages in the process of acquiring new and state-of-the-art weaponry,armoury and transportation for the police force.
The entire process is elaborate and requires time. So far,we have not yet received any new gear as certain clearances were being obtained. We have to convince whatever country we are importing the weapons from that they are not for civilian use. Further,import clearance has to be obtained. We have finally completed all these procedures,and the actual purchase and acquisition will be done in a day or two, said Gafoor.
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