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Traffic cops advisers on electronic eyes

While Mumbai’s motorists are now being scrutinised as they weave through the financial capital’s famed traffic pile-ups...

Written by Jaidev Hemmady | Mumbai |
September 10, 2009 1:51:39 am

While Mumbai’s motorists are now being scrutinised as they weave through the financial capital’s famed traffic pile-ups,the police’s traffic department will now assist in monitoring security and law-and-order situations by expanding the surveillance system to include about 5,000 closed circuit television cameras across the city. Having earned valuable experience on using CCTVs to monitor traffic during the pilot runs of the just-initiated Area Traffic Control project,the traffic department is currently fine-tuning plans with the state government to install and use a much larger number of CCTV cameras to make the city better secured and easier to monitor.

JCP (Traffic) Sanjay Barve confirmed that his department’s experience will come in handy in assisting other policing activities through the use of a CCTV-based system. “The cameras will be installed at locations like multiplexes,malls,places of worship,schools,important traffic junctions,vital installations and all the important places of congregation,” Barve said. “The idea would be to make it easier for law-enforcement agencies to monitor the city and help during law-and-order situations.”

Bids have been invited from private players and a decision is expected soon on what kind of cameras and what software would best suit the city’s requirements.

Asked why the traffic department was being given such a responsibility,ACP (Traffic) Amarjit Singh said,“We have earlier used CCTV cameras at 100 traffic junctions to monitor traffic and as such,the department is more experienced with this kind of work. A lot of study goes into such a project,like studying what angles the cameras should be installed at for maximum output,and the software that helps the cameras adjust to light during day and night. So far,we have a blueprint and are still working on other specifications.”

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Details on where the camera feed will be monitored from are yet to be finalised; Barve said the five regions of the Mumbai police would probably have individual monitoring systems.

Singh said,“The cameras would help not only for resolving traffic-related issues,but also during possible riots or terrorist attacks. For example,if such cameras had been installed during the 26/11 attacks,they would have been able to track the movements of the terrorists who were moving throughout the city. The technology planned is so superior that at the click of a button,cameras would zoom in and focus on any part of the city or any vehicle.”

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First published on: 10-09-2009 at 01:51:39 am

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