COIMBATORE: The Coimbatore City Police have requested for deployment of commando force in the district following intelligence information that six terrorists have intruded into Tamil Nadu. Security was beefed up across the district and 13 major state checkposts with the highest level of checkings reported from Mettupalayam. The commandos are expected to reach Coimbatore by afternoon.
"We have stalled proper security arrangements by deploying 2000 police personals across the city. There is no need for people of Coimbatore to panic," said city police commissioner Sumit Sharan.
According to sources from the DGP office, "A group of six LeT terrorists have entered the state through Sri Lanka. The group consists of one Pakistani and five Sri Lankan Tamil Muslims who are said to carry out Terrorist Initiated Incidents (TII) and one of them is identified as Ilayas Anwar."
The source further added that "the intended targets of this group invariably includes places of religious importance, tourist location witnessing a high footfall of foreigners, crowded public places, important leaders of political and social organisations. Also, they may try to attack foreign embassies, central and state establishments and also Hindu leaders and place of worship."
“The reports said that the group had disguised themselves as Hindus smearing tilak and vibhuti on their forehead to pose themselves as Hindu pilgrims,” said a senior police official.
"We know that they have already entered the state. All the agencies are working to trace the suspects and their motive," added the officer.
Coimbatore city police headed by police commissioner Sumit Sharan called a meeting of the departmental heads on Friday early morning to discuss the situation. Post the meeting, security was further strengthened in places including Coimbatore Airport, railway stations, bus stands and religiously important places.
DGP JK Tripathy has instructed the department to conduct storming operations in all parts of Tamil Nadu tonight along with deploying more units on night patrol duty.
Police beefed up security in Coimbatore and other parts of Tamil Nadu following an intelligence alert that six LeT terrorists from Sri Lanka have entered the state.— The New Indian Express (@NewIndianXpress) August 23, 2019
Express photos by Raja Chidambaram. pic.twitter.com/3TVyvk5Ju2
An order was circulated to all the district heads across the state that the intelligence machinery and the coastal areas in the state to be geared up immediately to have a close watch on the movement of strangers/infiltration and to prevent their evil designs.
The movement of ferries and small boats are to be monitored closely and unit officers shall sensitise fishermen in wake of this input to identify any such infiltration.
Chennai on high alert
Chennai city police commissioner AK Viswanathan addressed the mediapersons here on Friday confirming that the city is put on high alert. "Security has beefed up in the city and storming operations are being conducted since last night and is still continuing. Patrolling has been increased and precautions have been put in place," he said.
Railways stations, airports, bus stands have come under the scanner and police are on the lookout for miscreants and are planning to conduct preventive detention.
The police force is also instructed to:
- Check vehicles for arms and explosives
- Deployment of more Temple Protection Force personnel
- Search lodges and hotels
- Intensify patrols
- Checkings at Railway stations, bus stands and airports
- Bookings under Motor Vehicles act
- Guarding sensitive/critical installations.
- Preventive arrests
- Open line patrols
In the afternoon, photos of people were circulated in social media, claiming them to be the terrorists who have entered the state. A senior police officer from the DGP office confirmed that those are fake photos and affirmed that police did not circulate any such photos.