Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cops dumped, evicted from Gateway of India

Mumbai: The Maharashtra government on Thursday removed a police platoon, which was guarding the Taj Mahal Hotel from the Gateway of India, after the media reported that the policemen had been living at the historic moment for two months.

IANS reports the platoon, which comprised 30 State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) troopers, was compelled to live on the pavements in and around the Gateway of India in the absence of any proper lodging-boarding arrangements made for them by the authorities.

The jawans were guarding the country’s best known hotel that was one of the main targets in last year’s terror attack. The men lived, ate and slept there, read newspapers, washed and hung their clothes there - right opposite the hotel.

The hotel is, meanwhile, busy with preparations to open a few portions of its heritage building which was damaged in last year’s terror attacks.

The troopers had just one police van in which they managed to change and move around in the city.

Last week’s unseasonal rains forced the troopers to put up plastic sheets to shield themselves from the rainwater.

Ironically, the Gateway of India recently completed a restoration and beautification work of Rs 20 million and is due to be opened to tourists soon.