HYDERABAD: It was business as usual at the RGI Airport in Shamshabad until four masked men carrying assault rifles, glock pistols and rucksacks full of ammunition stormed out to hijack a bus and take its passengers hostage. After a fierce gun battle that lasted over an hour-and-a-half, two of them were shot dead and the other two captured alive in a joint operation led by CISF jawans and Octopus commandos of Telangana Police and the special party of Cyberabad police. However, there was something different about the entire hostage crisis. Yes! It was a mock drill conducted by Shamshabad Deputy Commissioner of Police AR Srinivas to check the preparedness of security forces in event of a Pathankot-like terrorist attack.
Within five minutes of the gun shots being first heard, the Quick Response Team (QRT) of CISF arrived at the scene and took positions. Meanwhile, the special party of the local police restricted the movement of civilians by cordoning off the area. Soon, more CISF parties arrived along with Telangana Police Octopus commandos.
The armed personnel mapped the locality to explain their plan of action, and Octopus team commander Mahesh Kumar took charge directing the personnel in combat uniform to be divided into cover party, assault party, rescue party, snipers, assault dog squad, and bomb disposal team. The drill was code-named ‘Operation Gagan’.
Meanwhile, jawans from CISF and local police cordoned off the inner and outer circles around the scene. As the assault and rescue parties closed in on the hijacked bus, the masked men opened a final attack on them during which two of them were shot down and the other two were caught alive by the assault dogs. After frisking and disarming the terrorists, bomb disposal teams took over. Proper measure was taken to defuse the bomb planted on the body of a dead terrorist.
Later, Srinivas commented they were prepared for any eventuality, and shortcomings would be rectified.