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Background checks of foreigners viewing Wold Cup finals


Mumbai : The Mumbai police is carrying out background checks on all foreigners who have purchased tickets for the India-Sri Lanka World Cup final Saturday, a senior police officer said.

Joint Police Commissioner (Crime) Himanshu Roy said Thursday the police are also coordinating with various central intelligence agencies and the Anti-Terrorist Squad and collating their inputs on a regular basis.

“The antecedents of all foreign nationals are being verified,” Roy said.

Referring to the role of the Crime Branch, Roy said that all its units, including the technical branch, have been assigned “specific tasks,” but declined to elaborate on them.

For the first time, the dozen-odd state and central security agencies, the armed forces, paramilitary forces and intelligence agencies will have anti-aircraft guns at their disposal as a precautionary measure during the World Cup final.

A no-fly zone has already been imposed in south Mumbai on the day of the match.

Armoured carriers and specialized vehicles of different types shall also be deployed.

Snipers will be stationed at strategic places in and around the venue to ward off any terror threats and all high-rise buildings in the vicinity of the stadium shall also be secured for the mega-event.

The authorities have also banned all boat rides from Gateway of India to places like Elephanta Islands, joyrides in the Mumbai harbour and other small, private or fishing boats for the day.

Also banned are sporting events like sailing, para-gliding, para-sailing and yachting activities on that day.

The ICC World Cup finals at Wankhede Stadium shall be witnessed by a host of VVIPs, including President Pratibha Patil, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, several leaders from around the country, top businessmen, leading films stars, and others.

The unprecedented security measures are the most stringent since the security deployed during the two-day visit of US President Barack Obama in November 2010.