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Mumbai to reduce stars’ security as underworld threat subsides

A review of the security cover of celebrities including Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan and a few leading filmmakers has led the authorities to conclude that the threat perception has reduced of late.



by

Nithin Belle

Published: Thu 11 Jun 2015, 10:32 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 2:56 PM

Mumbai - The security cover of some of Bollywood’s celebrities could be scaled down as Mumbai Police believe that the threat from underworld dons has reduced significantly in recent months.

A review of the security cover of celebrities including Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan and a few leading filmmakers including Rajkumar Hirani, Farah Khan and Vidhu Vinod Chopra, by the crime branch has led the authorities to conclude that the threat perception has reduced of late.

The crime branch has recommended a scaling down of the security to about half a dozen Bollywood personalities. However, Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria has to take the final call on the matter, according to police sources.

Many Bollywood celebrities are targeted by underworld dons and gangsters, seeking protection money film distribution rights. Last August, gangster Ravi Pujari had called up Shah Rukh Khan’s office and warned that he should not work with Ali and Karim Morani. His henchmen also fired three rounds near the Morani’s home at Bandra last year.

Since many of Pujari’s gangsters have been eliminated or nabbed, the police believe that the threat to Bollywood stars has also reduced considerably.

Mumbai Police and the Maharashtra government frequently review the security cover that is provided to VVIPs and celebrities. Almost a hundred VVIPs and VIPs are provided security by more than 800 police officers and men at a huge cost to the exchequer.

Security is provided under various categories such as Z+, Z, Y and X. About a dozen VIPs including the chief minister, the governor and a few other leaders are provided Z+ security.

Last year, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis decided to downgrade the security cover given to many politicians, their relatives and celebrities. Getting police security has in recent years also become a status symbol for politicians in the state.

nithin@khaleejtimes.com


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