BANGALORE: The police inspector of Malleswaram traffic police station, Shashikala, was suspended for not leading UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi’s convoy on the designated route, when the latter was visiting the city on Saturday morning.
Following a complaint from the Special Protection Group (SPG), Bangalore Police Commissioner B G Jyoti Prakash Mirji ordered her suspension.
The incident took place while Shashikala was leading Sonia’s convoy from Raj Bhavan, where she had stayed on Friday night, to HAL Airport. The inspector was allegedly conversing over mobile phone and forgot the route map and strayed on the wrong route.
The convoy had to take a left at Anil Kumble Circle and proceed to Cubbon Road; however, it strayed into M G Road. Following a conversation with security personnel, the convoy slowed down and entered Cubbon Road after taking a left at Brigade Road junction.
SPG officials reportedly lambasted the inspector and conveyed the breach in VVIP security to Mirji.
“The SPG officials had done a three-day trial run prior to Gandhi’s arrival. But, they were irked at the change in route due to lack of presence of mind of the inspector,” an official said. Following the incident, Additional Commissioner of Police (Law & Order) T Suneel Kumar initiated an inquiry against her.
Meanwhile, Sashikala reportedly explained to higher-ups that the route change was the fault of the pilot vehicle’s driver. “The inspector has stated that the wireless network was not working as SPG had activated jammers; hence, she had used mobile phones. As she was communicating with her counterparts about the location, the driver changed the designated route. However, it is difficult to believe her version,” sources added.
The route map was prepared by Deputy Commissioner of Police of VVIP Security A N Swamy.