36 women from northeast to form Delhi’s terror shieldNEW DELHI: Delhi will be the first police force in the country to have an all-women SWAT team. Home minister Rajnath Singh will formally induct the unit in Delhi Police on Friday.
Trained by specialists from India and abroad, 36 women constables from northeastern states have been inducted into the squad after rigorous, 15-month training. It is the brainchild of police commissioner Amulya Patnaik.
“These women are second to none when it comes to handling terror strikes and hostage crises in urban areas. In fact, they were rated better than their male counterparts by their trainers at Police Training College in Jharoda Kalan,” Patnaik said.
The formation of this team is being considered a big achievement as most western countries do not have all-women SWAT teams due to the kind of training required to become one.
The maximum numbers of members (13) are from Assam and five each from Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Manipur. They are trained in the Israeli Krav Maga, an unarmed combat style, and equipped with MP5 submachine guns and Glock 21 pistols.
These commandos will be stationed at strategic locations in central and south Delhi. Amids intel inputs of women fidayeens planning to target the capital, this all-women unit would helm the security apparatus around Red Fort and India Gate as well.
Many of them would be posted in anti-terror vans called Parakram.
The women are trained to handle challenges unique to the capital—like climbing multi-storey buildings or carrying out hostage rescue operations at hotels, buses or metro.
The idea of an all-women SWAT team germinated when 41 newly-inducted policewomen had completed a four-month commando training.
To minimise the problem of language, an instructor from the northeast has also been included in the training team.
“They have undergone a rigorous training of 15 months as against 12 months for general duty male constables. They further honed their skills at NSG Centre, Manesar.
They are experts at unarmed combat, ambush and counter ambush, jungle operation, urban operation which includes building interventions, vehicle/bus intervention and VVIP security. They have also been imparted basic knowledge of explosives and IEDs apart from being trained to use a wide array of weapons,” DCP (Special Cell) Pramod Kushwaha said.
“Experts at abseiling and scaling, they can spring from deep sleep to action, fully armed, within a minute of an alarm. Not only have they mixed well with personnel from other parts of the country, there is an amazing mix of cultures on display at the academy at present,” said a trainer.