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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Half of Bandra-Santa Cruz stretch under CCTV watch

Police Hope Network Will Check Crime

Mumbai: A network of close circuit television (CCTV) cameras installed in parts of suburbs promises to cover 3.6 lakh households, probably making the per person density of the new system highest in the city. The security system is a far cry from a web of CCTVs in London, which has 1.85 million cameras and a density of one camera each for 32 people — the highest in the world. 
    By installing 61 cameras across the western side of Khar, Bandra and Santa Cruz, the police have achieved a density of roughly one camera per 20,000 residents. Last year, 237 incidents of chain snatching and 617 vehicle theft cases were reported in 
Zone 9, under whose jurisdiction these three police stations fall. 
    Today, half the zone is under electronic surveillance. Cameras have been installed on almost all connecting roads in the locality, covering every entry and exit point. 
    Congress Member of Parliament Priya Dutt had sanctioned money for the project 
from the MP fund. The police had prepared a proposal to install cameras last year and Dutt had arranged Rs 25 lakh for the project. 
    Zonal deputy commissioner of police K M M Prasanna said, "This will help us prevent and detect crime. We have covered all the entry and exit points in the area and the cameras will be monitored from the respective police stations, round the clock." 

    "It will help us control street crime," said an officer. 
    Earlier, a local residents' association had installed limited CCTVs in their neighbourhood to help the police identify criminals. The police were offered free maintenance of the cameras for three years. The officials said that they had installed the cameras in such a way that a vehicle's number plate and the persons seated inside can be easily seen. 
    The cable network is exclusively for the police and an electric pole is used for cable balance. 
    The police had laid overhead fibre cables on the approximately 25-kilometre stretch covering all the in-and-out roads. 
    Prasanna said that in several places where there are no cameras, the cable network comes in handy. This ensures that at any point in time, the police can bring the entire area under electronic surveillance by connecting the cameras to the existing cable points. "It will prove to be of great help during the Bandra Fair and Ganesh visarjan," said Prasanna.

BIG BROTHERS WATCHING: Cops monitor CCTV footage at Bandra police station. (Left) CCTV camera installed on an electric pole at S V Road, Bandra


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