This article is written by Rakchit Mishra from Birla Global University. This article completely deals with security provisions that are provided to the prime minister of India.
Special security in general terms means that a group of trained people protect the government of a particular country in case there is any threat to the government of a country. It is a special group popularly known as a Special Protection Group that not only protects the Prime Minister of a country but also protects other important persons or officials. Earlier in the 1980s, there was no such Special Protection Group to protect such “VVIPS” (very very important persons) rather there was an existence of a Delhi police security to protect the Prime Minister of India in every instance but after the murder of Indira Gandhi who was the Prime Minister of India at that time, it was observed that the Delhi police security was not able to perform their duties and even due to such incidence it was seen that the objective and the purpose for which such security was made was not fulfilled.
So after a few years, a committee named Birbal Nath Committee was set up to give suggestions for the establishment of special security for the Prime Minister of India, after which it was introduced in the year 1985. Rajiv Gandhi was also given such protection by the Special Protection Unit as he was the Prime Minister of India but after he discontinued from being the Prime Minister of India, he started receiving many warning signals from some of the sources because after such discontinuation of office the Prime Minister’s protection by the special security along with other facilities comes to an end, so as such there was no availability of such protections for Rajiv Gandhi. Several people started giving threat signals to him and even after a few years he was also killed so after such incidence certain changes were made in the SPG Act, 2019 which stated that protection will be given to the Prime Minister and his family for ten years from the time when the Prime Minister discontinues his/her/their office.
Indian Prime Minister’s security
As it is stated that security is meant for the protection of the prime minister of India. It is not provided on any special occasions, rather they protect the prime minister at every moment because they may receive any threats due to many reasons. The Prime Minister is the leader of our country so the protection of the prime minister is necessary.
There may be some instances where the prior examination is required because if there is no such prior examination then there may be some possibilities of a larger threat to the Prime Minister of our country, so to avoid such threats prior examination is necessary. If the Prime Minister has to travel to some places within the country for addressing certain matters or for attending any types of high profile meetings then in such cases, all those places are examined by the Delhi police security branch before the arrival of the Prime Minister so that if there are any threats found then either such thing will be removed from such place or such event will be cancelled. But after examination, if it is found that there are no threats to the life of the Prime Minister of India then it will be informed to the head of the security branch and after that only the event will be conducted.
On the day of the event, before the arrival of the Prime Minister of India, several arrangements of securities will be made even after the examination of such place by the Delhi police security branch because there are chances that someone may implant anything immediately at the time of the event or there are chances of any other threat which may endanger the life of the Prime Minister of our country. So to avoid such things, special protection group commandos generally go to such a place where the Prime Minister will arrive to address the people and after that, the Chief of such commandos arrives along with the Prime Minister of India. It is to be noted that such special commandos are only arranged for the Prime Minister of our country.
There is again a special arrangement made for the Prime Minister for this journey from their residence to that place, so if such place where the event is to be conducted falls within the boundaries of that particular state where the Prime Minister resides, then in those circumstances the roads will be blocked for a particular period so that the prime minister can reach that place easily without facing any threat in between the passage of their journey. Then the Prime Minister travels in a bulletproof vehicle along with several other vehicles which include a vehicle of Delhi police security branch, two dummy vehicles, ambulance, jammer car, etc. After reaching such a place, the Prime Minister along with the national security guards will walk to the stage to address the assembly.
But if the Prime Minister is going to travel to any other state or any country then, in such case they will first reach the high tech area of the Delhi airport from where they will further travel to any place within or outside the territory of India in the Boeing aircraft and during that time other flight landings or take-offs are restricted. There is high security in the aircraft through which the Prime Minister travels to other places or countries for high-profile meetings and also there are more than 450 SPG commandos in and around the residence of the prime minister. Lastly, the type of security which is provided to the Prime Minister is named Z+ security which includes more than ten police authorities, NSG(National Security Guard) commandos, and several other staff.
The security provisions – a brief overview
Certain security provisions are mentioned in the Special Protection Group Act, 1988 which was later on amended in the year 2019. Earlier it was seen that the special protection group commandos were provided to many other VIPs but after the amendment now it is restricted to the present and former Prime Minister and also to their families. This Act states several definitions and even talks about the members which will clarify the working of the securities. It also states that the securities will be controlled by the central government but for giving directions any other officer may be appointed by the central government.
It also talks about the persons to whom such security will be provided such as the Prime Ministers and their family but in the case of former Prime Ministers and their families they will be protected for a period not exceeding five years but before this amendment, it was stated that the families of the former Prime Minister will be protected for the term of ten years due to which Gandhi family was also given such protection after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi and Indira Gandhi. If any Prime Minister disagrees with the protection of such security then in such a case that security will cease to operate for such Prime Minister and even for their family. This Act also states that the members who are included in the Special Protection Group will work till the president is satisfied with their work but if the President is not satisfied with their work then he can remove such members from the service.
There are certain restrictions imposed on the members of the Special Protection Group such as they cannot meet any media, they cannot speak anything in front of the media and they cannot be a part of any other organizations or they cannot work under any other person or in any other firm. Any member who is affronted by any order then can appeal to the board which is formed by the central government within the period not exceeding thirty days and the order of the board will be the final order which will not be questioned further in any court of law within the territory of India.
The need for more security provisions
As it is known that the prime minister is the head of our country so there are many possibilities that many of the citizens of the country may dislike their opinion and decisions so they may receive threat signals due to which their life may be at risk. In those situations, the security of the Prime Minister is mandatory because those security groups are the ones who will protect the Prime Minister from threats.
As the securities will work under the control of the Prime Minister, it is also mandatory to keep a check on all the members who are a part of the special protection group because they might transfer all the information of the Prime Minister to any other person or they can help others in doing some illegal acts against the Prime Minister so there should be some specific guidelines for the security which will prescribe the workings of the security and if they work beyond such prescribed guidelines then they should be removed from the service. It is not possible to appoint only a person who will look after all the members of the Special Protection Group because in that particular security group there are more than 3000 members due to which it will not be easy for the person to keep a check on all the securities and to define whether the act done by the security is ground for disqualification or not. Even if there are no restrictions imposed on them then they can do anything according to their wish so it is also necessary to impose certain restrictions on the securities like as it is mentioned that they cannot communicate with any outsiders and neither they can work under any organization apart from working under the control of the central government that’s why it is necessary to have security provisions so that all the members will work in a prescribed manner to protect the Prime Minister at every instance.
For example- if Mr. Yash is the Prime Minister of a country and in this residence, 900 people work as security but there were no restrictions made for such securities, and neither there was the existence of any provisions which defined working of the securities so after few days some of the securities helped some terrorists to enter into the residence of the Prime Minister to assassinate him. But if there were any such restrictions made for those securities then in such cases they would not have succeeded in doing such illegal act because in the case of normal human beings there are several laws that define the illegal act and according to which a person may be punished for violating such law. That’s why there is much need for the security provisions in our country so that they will work within the limits of such provisions.
In our country, the Prime Minister is protected by the high-level securities popularly known as SPG commandos at every moment and there is a Special Protection Group Act which defines certain things related to the workings of those securities and if any of the security who is the member of the SPG commando is found violating any of the provision which is mentioned in the SPG Act then for such misconduct the member will be removed from the service.
Furthermore, from my point of view, our country has one of the best security groups to protect the Prime Minister from any kind of threat as they work in a prescribed manner and they are also highly trained commandos.
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