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Karunanidhi was the last Z plus category protectee with NSG commandos in TN

Following DMK president Kalaignar M Karunanidhi’s demise on 7th August, the state has no other VIP with Z plus category provided by NSG commandos left. The 22-member strong National Security Guard (NSG) contingent which was stationed to guard the DMK patriarch will now return to its headquarters in New Delhi for its next deployment, according to a TOI report by A Selvaraj.

In December 2016, with the death of former CM J Jayalalitha, 40 commandos of the NSG who provided her with Z plus category protection returned for their next deployment. The state has no other VIPs who are given NSG commandos for protection.

What is Z plus protection

This is the highest level of protection in India allowed to a select few VIPs in the country. The VIPs and VVIPs who are given Z plus protection are guarded by commandos from the National Security Guard. The protection is allowed by the central intelligence after evaluating the reasons cited by the state intelligence to provide Z plus security to a VIP. The state intelligence analyses the threat perceptions of high level politicians and other personalities based on inputs given by a special branch CID monitored by a superintendent of police.

The BJP government has given the Z plus protection cover to 50 VIPs who will be guarded by 35-40 security personnel at any point of time.

The protection given can even be withdrawn later if the threat perception to the protectee has reduced over the years.

In Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami is also Z plus category protectee by virtue of his position in the state. However, they are guarded by the CRPF personnel and police commandos but not NSG commandos.

Any VIP who is given Z plus protection with NSG commando protection will have a pilot vehicle, a rear pilot vehicle, three escort vehicles and a jammer vehicle in their convoy.

Deputy CM O Panneerselvam, working president of DMK and Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin and BJP leader Subramanian Swamy are all given Y plus security with CRPF personnel and commandos.

In 2014, Kalaignar even wrote to then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to request the Central Intelligence Agency to upgrade his son and political heir Stalin to Z plus security as he was facing threats from MK Alagiri (Karunanidhi’s elder son and Stalin’s brother).

Source: The News Minute

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