Expect nothing, live frugally on surprise.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Roles we must play

Every time there is a security threat, it is the govt, police and security agencies that get the flak. It is time to look at what role citizens can play at such a time

The coordination between the police and the citizens is exemplary. That is what got reflected in the unfortunate 9/13 serial bomb blasts. With the casualty count low, it just goes on to show how good is the coordination between the people of the city and the authorities," so says HGS Dhaliwal, DCP (South). And indeed it has been exemplary of its citizens. The serial bomb blasts did rock the capital once again, disrupting life and business, killing some of the citizens as well. Yet the fact that the city is back on track in no time, the fact that the market association of GK M Block market acted on time and evacuated the shoppers and shopkeepers prevented a big mishap from taking place, the fact that despite the threat still looming over roads of the city are already brimming with people, speaks volumes about the awareness levels of the citizens. All said and done, this does not ensure a safety net from any possible future terror threat. So, what next? What more needs to be done to avert any such possible threat to the city’s security? "Our city is huge. The markets have immense footfall and people deserve to enjoy freedom to move around. For this we, at our end, try to ensure tough security measures. Whenever there is a possible threat to the security of the city, constant announcements are made. Take them seriously. Avoid panic, since that is the aim of the trouble makers," says Dhaliwal. He also suggests that people should stop using thin plastic bags altogether. Each citizen, according to him has to be the eyes and ears of the police and be quick in informing the moment they suspect anything, no matter how little or insignificant it is. "A few months back, while going to Nehru Place in a DTC bus, I noticed somebody had left behind a small bag. It looked pretty heavy. The passengers in the bus instantly raised an alarm. It so turned out that it was the lunch box of a gentleman in the bus who had forgotten it under the seat. Had it been a bomb or something, thanks to the alert passengers, a situation could have been averted," shares Abhinav Das, a resident of CR Park. A vigilant citizen there we have. The Executive Director of NIDM (National Institute of Disaster Management), PG Dhar Chakrabarty shares that individuals need play a more active role in preventing any such trouble. In the case of a blast they must evacuate the place instead of standing around to watch the spectacle. Also, he suggests, it is the RWA’s and market associations in the city who need to become more alert since they are can respond to any crisis immediately, something that happened during the last week’s blasts. It is now time to start paying a little more attention to the literature, instructions and security tips given by the police at different points of time.


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