For the first time, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) will introduce women personnel to guard various VVIPs of the country. A 10-week training of the first batch of 33 women personnel will start soon.
Their selection has been done a few days ago after getting approval from the Ministry of Home Affairs. An official communication accessed by News18 said that an action plan to increase the strength of women personnel has been submitted by the CRPF. “Initially 6 platoons of women personnel will be raised," the communication said.
The deployment would be done on a ‘need basis’ but few dignitaries will get women personnel from the first batch, sources said. Also, women VVIPs would also be on priority in view of the upcoming poll season. These women CRPF personnel will also get training to fire assault rifles such as AK-47s.
The CRPF guards a number of high-profile dignitaries including Home Minister Amit Shah, top Congress leaders like Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
What May Have Prompted This Move
Sources claimed that after witnessing violence during West Bengal polls, “the job of induction of women to protect VVIPs was prioritised to time it before upcoming Uttar Pradesh elections." During West Bengal polls, some leaders including BJP President JP Nadda were attacked during their rallies and roadshows.
The fears of such attacks on dignitaries remain in elections and five states are scheduled to go to polls next year in February-March.
A Home Ministry official, on the condition of anonymity confirmed to News18 that a plan was sought from CRPF which gives protection to the highest number of dignitaries in the country presently.
Another senior CRPF official on the condition of anonymity said: “After getting approval from Ministry of Home Affairs, process of induction of these women personnel has started. It will be done in phase-wise manner. Selected women will get adequate training."
“The proposal was given by Director General CRPF Kuldiep Singh to Home Minister Amit Shah in a recent meeting while he was presenting details of CRPF and the immediate future plans. After getting due approval, it has been decided to induct women to guard VVIPs," sources said.