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India to be on guard against terror threat from air


New Delhi : The Indian Air Force (IAF) has been asked to be on vigil against any terror threat from air after the perpetrators of the Mumbai terrorist attack used a sea route to sneak into the city, a defence official said.

This followed an instruction from Defence Minister A.K. Antony given at a meeting here Wednesday, attended by Defence Secretary Vijay Singh and three Services chiefs Admiral Sureesh Mehta, General Deepak Kapoor and Air Chief Marshal Fali H. Major.

“The defence minister has reviewed the details of the preparedness against any possible terror threat from air,” the official said here.

“The situation along the LoC (Line of Control dividing Kashmir) was also discussed, including measures to prevent infiltration of terrorists as the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir is known to be an important area of recruitment and training of terrorist,” the official added.

Antony called for greater synergy amongst defence forces and internal security agencies and for beefing up the coastal security.

“The minister has called for greater coordination among all agencies, both defence and internal security, in such a way so that intelligence inputs become actionable,” the official added.

Indian Navy chief Mehta Tuesday denied reports of advance intelligence inputs about the terrorists using the sea route to enter Mumbai for the brazen attack on the Nov 26 night and the ensuing three-day terror drama. He also added that the intelligence has to be “actionable.”

“The meeting was called to review the security situation and the state of preparedness to face any terrorist threat. The meeting also discussed the plan for coastal security and acquisition of system and platform including coastal radar and interceptor boats,” the official said.

Admiral Mehta has also called for more electronic surveillance to beef up the security along the 7,516-km coastline of the country.