Bengaluru: Tighter vigil at places of worship

Hindu, Muslim, Christian religious leaders to hold meetings to implement various safety measures.

Bengaluru: After the city police commissioner issued a security alert to all religious prayers hall, the heads of three major religions - Hindu, Muslim and Christian, plan to hold meetings to implement various safety measures.

In the wake of Easter Sunday attack in Sri Lanka, Police Commissioner T. Suneel Kumar had issued security alert and asked religious heads to increase security and alert police if they come across any suspicious activity.

Agamatraya Mahamandala President Somasundara Deekshith who heads temples run by Muzrai Department will meet the Muzrai Commissioner to enhance security cover at all temples and post guards.

He also suggested that trust and privately run temples must also follow certain rules like that of temples under muzrai department and a circular must be issued in this regard.

Temples like Gavi Ganga—dhara temple attracts large number of devotees, especially during Shivaratri and Kartika Somavara and security should be tightened, he said. No doubt the muzrai department has installed two CCTV cameras but given the number of footfalls of the devotees it is not sufficient, he felt. In addition he added that he would hold a meeting with all the priests and heads of the temples to ascertain the situation.

Maqsood Imran Rashadi, Imam and Khateeb of City Jamia Masjid said there are 1,200 mosques across the city and 6,000 across the state. Heads, presidents and secretaries of all these mosques have been asked to install CCTV at all the entry and exit points.

However, CCTVs per se cannot prevent any disasters, he has also suggested to appoint volunteers to zero in on movement of suspicious people and inform the same to the police as well to the Jamia Masjid head.

The Imam said that during the Friday prayer meetings terror attacks in the name of Islam must be condemned and youth should be guided on the right path. He said the police commissioner had visited city Jamia Masjid and was impressed by the security measures.

Public relation officer of Archdiocese of Bangalore J.A. Kantaraj said that once the Archbishop of Bengaluru is in town an emergency meeting would be convened to follow the security diktats issued by the police department.

Most churches have installed high resolution security cameras even before the security alert were issued. He lamented that office of Archbishop of Bengaluru did not receive an invitation and said the office would be happy to meet and update on the security measures.

Infant Jesus Church is poorly guarded

A visit to Infant Jesus Church in Viveknagar shows how vulnerable the shrine is as it is frequented by thousands of people and has multiple entry and exit points.

Security guards posted at the Church told Deccan Chronicle that most devotees are reluctant to undergo any security checks. This can be taken advantage of by radical groups.

The church’s main hall has a capacity to accommodate 2,500 people and it witnesses heavy rush on Thursdays.

Although the Church has 175 CCTV cameras fixed at different locations, most gates are unmanned and lack metal detectors.

The condition of some other churches, mosques and temples in the city are no different.

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