BOON or BANE !!! What is it like to be guarded by Z+ security in India? - Syed Misbah Ahmed I will try to be concise & to the point. I am not an immediate family member of a former Prime Minister. But I am related to someone who has a Z+ Security Cordon and as such have some kind of idea. Contrary to what most people may think, a Z+ cover is a big problem for those who do not want it for the sake of showing-off . Security like that limits time and movement. It also requires immaculate planning by the team. I have also seen some people stating that Z+ has 3 vehicles and 36 people in the convoy. The reality is that local police are usually present to assist the convoy and hence this brings up the total no of vehicles to 5 or 6. Time & Protocol Issues Under normal circumstances, if the protectee has to visit someone, he informs the PSO (Personal Security Officer) regarding the visit. The PSO is usually the person closest to the protectee and rides shotgun in his car. He asks for a 30 min. period for reconnaissance & planning and is usually granted that time. One primary route and 2 alternates ones are prepared, to be used in case of emergency. The PSO calls up local authorities (civilian police) in that area and asks them for ROPs (Road Opening Party). These advance teams sweep the routes beforehand and clear traffic congestions, road blocks etc. A patrolman is placed at each intersection so as to stop the traffic when the convoy arrives. He is on the same frequency as the pilot vehicle leading the convoy. Only when this is completed, does the VIP leave his house. This protocol is usually adhered to in most situations, broken only in the extreme case of an emergency. Privacy Concerns If you need to go somewhere alone without cover, its almost impossible. For example, going for a date becomes a pain. I know of a guy who gave some excuse about visiting his friend, while he was going out with his girlfriend. His father did not allow him out without security but he was adamant that day. So they (his father & PSO) agreed. He left in a joyful mood, having no one to report about his date. But as soon as his car left the building, a black Skoda silently followed him at a distance, its occupants being 3 armed guards and a skilled driver. Yes, this is the kind of privacy issues Z+ cover brings with it. Unless you belong to the Federalnaya Sluzhba Kontrrazvedki, you wont spot or lose the tail. In-House Protection In-house protection is usually accompanied by layers of additional security elements depending on the threat perception. This is paid for and maintained personally. A car at the front gate is in full view of a camera atop the wall. The visitor will usually press a button on the intercom & will talk to a guard in a cabin just within the gate, who will check with the security office inside the building. If the visit is planned, the guard will then emerge via a side gate to check identification papers. If these are in order, he will retire to his cabin and press a button. The gates will open and the car will go forward to the gravel forecourt where more guards will be waiting. Since this treatment is meted out to each & everyone, it has some privacy concerns. I know at least two people who were thoroughly offended when searched by the guards. UPDATE: A lot of people asked me via messages to elaborate a bit on in-house protection. Well, I cannot be any more detailed than I already have. But I can state some common security measures that are usually used in VVIP houses. Please keep in mind that this varies from person to person. Some houses have dogs behind chain-link fences. There are two teams, and each responds only to one dog handler. The handlers work alternate nights. After dark (usually 2300 hrs), gates in the fencing are opened and the dogs have the run of the whole estate. Thereafter the guard stays inside his cabin, and in the event of a late visitor he contacts the handler to call off the dogs. All the locks are electromagnetic, and access is strictly monitored. Meaning that, if a specific door is opened via a card, the security guard monitoring the cameras checks manually if the person is authorized to open it. Some houses have a electronically controlled spike strip mounted after the main gate & before the house entrance. Once a vehicle enters the roller gates, the gates close automatically. Here the guards will check the vehicle for threats etc. When he is convinced, he will ask for the spike strip to be withdrawn. Then & only then can the vehicle proceed forward. The men & the equipment The NSG guards use the Heckler & Koch MP5 Sub-machine gun. It can empty its thirty-round magazine in a couple of seconds, but the firing is limited to two shot bursts, with one repeat. Anyone stopping those four rounds will start feeling unwell very fast. Such economy also allows for taking the perpetrators into custody (after treatment) for interrogation. A Glock 17 handgun is used as a backup weapon and is usually holstered on the hip. Cars used are generally NIJ level III or IV. If the government doesnt have such a car available, the protectees private car is often converted to a armoured one. Some people commented that the information here is classified & might be a security risk. For clarification, read below. NB: There is NO Classified Information in this answer. If you read the answer once again, you will realize that the measures that I have mentioned are quite commonly known. There is nothing new or classified in the answer. Its just that you have failed to noticed them. Allow me to demonstrate with some examples. Advance teams: Havent you ever been caught at an intersection through which a VVIP is passing and been stopped? Well, thats the patrolman informed by the lead vehicle to stop the traffic, and that is obviously done on the same frequency. In-House Protection: Again, as I said these are personal security elements added on ones own expense & hence vary from person to person. A lot of ideas such as the one mentioned can be found on the internet as well as Youtube. Equipment: The information about the equipment used by NSG is available on the internet and elsewhere. Bharatrakshak and even our own Wikipedia knows about this. Check them out.
Posted on: Wed, 07 Jan 2015 07:35:27 +0000
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