Deepavali: Chennai police rely on body camera jackets, drones

Chennai: Gone are the days when city police erected tall watch towers and a policeman with a binocular keeping a watch on the crowd during festivals to prevent crime at crowded areas.

This Deepavali is a tad different with the men in khakhi going all out implementing advanced technology to prevent and detect crime. During the festival, the city will be under the watchful eyes of 15,000 police contingent.

A large posse of personnel will be deployed at certain parts of the city to manage the huge turnout of people. Attention diversion, chain snatching, mobile phone theft, missing children being some of the common incidents, apart from police men on duty thousands of CCTV cameras are installed across the city.

For example, T Nagar along has 1,200 CCTV cameras at various shopping streets, establishments and residential areas.

Yesterday, 1,000 CCTV cameras were inaugurated at Nolambur. It maybe noted that Chennai district has the highest number of CCTV cameras in the State.

Take a step further, few days ago, sophisticated ‘Body Camera jackets’ were given to 15 policemen.

Some of the features of the jacket are – GPS facility, torch lights, cameras with live feed, tracking system, walkie-talkie to communicate with the control room.

The policemen can wear them and ride on two-wheelers or walk through a crowd. “The footage will be sent to mini control rooms and they can also ask for a back-up if needed. The video will remain as an evidence,” a police source said.

The city police have also installed ten cameras with Face Detector Technology. The cameras can immediately recognise repeat offenders and give out their details saving the police department a lot of time. In select places, drone cameras are put to use.

Naomi N