Mumbai police to grade malls,places of worship on securityhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/mumbai/mumbai-police-to-grade-malls-places-of-worship-on-security/

Mumbai police to grade malls,places of worship on security

20 parameters such as CCTVs,background verification of guards will be audited to grade them between A and F

In the first such initiative,the Mumbai police have decided to grade establishments across the city on the basis of their security arrangements and record these for better accountability.

The gradation will be done on the basis of security audit of establishments like malls,multiplexes,financial institutions,religious institutions,hospitals,schools and other vital installations.

The legal provisions of linking these security grades to the licensing of establishments,wherever possible,are also being examined,sources said.

The decision was announced by Police Commissioner Dr Satyapal Singh at a security conclave held Thursday,where representatives of all major malls and multiplexes were present. Similar meetings will be held in the months to come.

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While Dr Singh could not be reached for comment,Additional Commissioner of Police (Protection and Security) Madhukar Pandey confirmed the decision.

“We will be grading establishments from A to F category,with A category being the highest. We have identified more then 20 parameters which,if fulfilled,will make the establishment eligible for the A grade,” Pandey said.

Sources said some of these parameters include structural security,installation of equipment like CCTVs and door frame metal detectors,background verification of security guards employed by the establishments and access control measures.

“For a long time,we have been getting feedback from our personnel that while they keep telling establishments to upgrade their security,there is no provision in the law to make these instructions mandatory. We ultimately hit upon the idea of grading establishments to fix accountability,” a senior police officer said.

In cases of establishments like hotels,malls and multiplexes,the police are mulling linking the issuance or renewal of their licences to their security standards. The legal provisions of such a move are currently being discussed with experts.

The security conclave held on Thursday was aimed at reviewing the existing security arrangements at malls and multiplexes as well as to strategise how to further make them safe and secure. The representatives also discussed some of their own problems with the police.

At the end of the conclave,it was decided that the police would train security personnel at malls and multiplexes in some of the security measures to be taken.

“We will train them to identify explosive devices,as well as cordoning off areas under threat and crowd control. The idea is to equip them better to handle such threats till we get to the spot,” said an officer.

gautam.mengle@expressindia.com