SAMBALPUR: After the arrest of Abdul Rehman Kataki from Cuttack district for his suspected Al Qaeda links, the Home Department and police administration have geared up measures to tighten security.
Following the recent direction of Home Department to review security in important installations and establishments in the State, including Hirakud Dam, Sambalpur SP Akhilesvar Singh examined the safety measures twice, the last being on Wednesday. Patrolling in the dam has been intensified and deployment augmented.
About six months back, DIG (NR) Prateek Mohanty reviewed the security arrangements at the dam and recommended armed deployment and improving the infrastructure, but no action has been taken as yet. Mohanty suggested deployment of Odisha Industrial Security Force (OSIF) in the main dam as well as Dyke, installation of CCTV cameras, drop gates on both sides of the main dam, watch tower and barrack on either side of the main dam.
Security in the dam has always been lax since its inception, except during the time when situation gets volatile. The DIG (NR) clarified that Water Resources Department has agreed to the recommendations and measures to be taken are under active consideration of the Government. Advertisement for recruitment of OISF has been published and suggestions would materialise soon, he added.
On the other hand, the Sambalpur SP laid thrust on the need to install CCTV cameras and setting up sentry points on either side of the main dam. The Irrigation Department has agreed to the proposal and will also bear the cost, he said.
Proper verification of visitors to the dam is also being made before giving entry permission, the SP said, adding that a DSP and an Inspector along with adequate deployment have been entrusted with the security of the dam and he himself is monitoring it.