HYDERABAD: Three years after the establishment of a command and control centre to monitor CCTV cameras in the Secunderabad Cantonment area, it no longer serves the purpose. Incidentally, the room has been converted into a storeroom which now houses the records of the Secunderabad Cantonment Board (SCB). It remains locked on most days and board officials cite lack of funds as the reason for shutting down the centre. For the last one year, it has been being used as a record room. This is at a time when surveillance by CCTV cameras is being encouraged across the state for not only ensuring peace but also for cracking criminal cases.
Of the 2,000 CCTV cameras proposed by SCB, only 480 have been installed to date along with a server and LED screens in the command control centre. Once this was done, technical problems started cropping up, say officials. When contacted, SCB officials also claimed that there were not enough technical staff to man the centre. The authorities are awaiting funds from the Ministry of Defence so that they can begin operations. Once the funds start flowing, they will install the remaining CCTV cameras, they said.
The centre was set up to identify and track issues of water, sewer leakages and dumping of garbage by commercial establishments on the roads. They also planned to monitor traffic on the main roads in the Cantonment area which has seven police stations _ Marredpally, Trimulgherry, Bowenpally, Karkhana, Begumpet, Tukaramgate and Bolarum.
DCP (north zone) B Sumathi said that the SCB command and control centre was set up using MLA and MP constituency development funds. “We do not depend on the command control centre to monitor CCTV cameras. We have identified 53,700 properties as commercial buildings, schools, colleges and community colonies in the north zone and have installed 45,500 CCTV cameras linked to the Hyderabad police commissioner’s office,” she said, adding, “If operations begin at the command and control centre, it will be helpful and the footage can be used to solve cases.”