Expecting nearly 40,000 spectators for the third T20 international cricket match between India and Australia at Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium on Sunday, the state government has decided to deploy 2,500 police personnel and 300 CCTV cameras for surveillance and security at the venue. The match is a series decider as both teams have won a match each.
Issuing a list of prohibited items – pets, edibles, cigarettes, video cameras, laptops, lighters, matchboxes, firecrackers, selfie sticks, sharp objects, helmets, backpacks, alcohol and drugs – Rachakonda Police Commissioner Mahesh Bhagwat said scanners have been installed at the stadium for easy detection of explosives and other prohibited material inside the venue.
Separate teams will monitor the movement of anti-social elements among spectators during the match, he said. This separate, specialized teams of OCTOPUS – the elite anti-terror force of Telangana police – and the counter-intelligence cell (CI-Cell) are on the job to ensure peaceful conduct of the match, he added.
Mobile phones are being allowed inside the stadium for the first time. Spectators will be allowed entry from 4 pm.
Speaking about the arrangements in place, Bhagwat said on Friday that personnel from the Armed Reserve police, Special Branch, central crime station, bomb disposal squads, dog squads, SHE teams, traffic, and law and order wings are part of the security machinery. Medical and fire department teams will also be stationed at the venue for emergencies.
Bhagwat said a joint command and control center has been set up at the stadium to monitor surveillance cameras and the footage will be supervised by a team of police at the stadium and also at the recently inaugurated Integrated Command and Control Center in Banjara Hills. He added that anti-sabotage teams will be on the ground to avoid any untoward incidents. They will frisk visitors at every entry point.
The police commissioner said that traffic restrictions will be in place between 4 pm Sunday and 1 am Monday. Heavy vehicles will not be permitted from Nagole, Chengicherla X Road, NFC Bridge, Habsiguda and Amberpet sides. Dedicated parking spots have been announced for the general public as well as VIP pass holders.
Bhagwat advised fans to use public transport like buses and Metro trains as far as possible to avoid traffic jams in the city. He pointed out that the Hyderabad Metro Rail (HMRL) has decided to operate special trains until 1 am on Monday and the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) will run special buses from important locations across the city to the stadium and back.