In the wake of an intelligence alert on possible intrusion of LeT terrorists into the state, tight armed security was provided to the Velankanni basilica.
According to the police, six check posts have been established around the shrine and all the vehicles were allowed only after a thorough inspection. While the Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS) has been deputed around the Church premises, every pilgrim was being allowed inside the Church only after intense frisking by security personnel.
Meanwhile, five special teams have been established to monitor hotels and lodges and to verify the identity of those staying at Velankanni. Two-wheeler squads are also constantly patrolling nuke and cranny of the town and its nearby areas. The police said that residents of coastal hamlets have been cautioned to remain alert and alert the cops if they spot suspicious persons or strangers.
On Friday, the Inspector General of Police (Central Zone) V Varadharajulu visited Velankanni and inspected the security arrangements around the church premises.
Meanwhile, owing to the proximity to Sri Lanka, the Tiruchy airport has also been put on high alert. “Three-tier security has been posted at the airport and all passengers and their baggage were allowed only after a thorough check,” said airport director K Gunasekaran. He also said that the city police were assisting the the CISF in security duty at the airport.
Similar security arrangements were made in all the southern districts. Devotees visiting all places of worship, including Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple in Madurai, Ramanathaswamy Temple in Rameswaram, Andal temple in Srivilliputtur and others, were thoroughly checked and allowed into the temple.
The Indian Coast Guard, Navy and the CSG have heightened surveillance in the coastal pockets in and around Rameswaram and were also conducting patrol in the sea. Similarly, the police provided tight security at the Pamban railway bridge too and were keeping a vigil on the boats and other vessels moving in the sea.