All You Need to Know About Z Plus Security
The security to be offered is classified into four types. The more a person is vulnerable to threats; the better security is offered to him. The classification of security includes Z plus security as security with more number of personnel to provide high security. Below Z Plus (Z+) comes Z, X and Y levels. These categories are divided on the basis of numbers of personnel in them to provide security shield. Z plus security offers security from over 36 personnel including more than 10 commandos and police personnel. On the other hand, Z, Y, and X offer a security shield of 22, 11 and 2 personnel respectively.
“With great power comes great responsibility”. We all have heard this phrase at some point in our lives. But the true fact that lies somewhere hidden in this phrase is that great power and position draws the need for uncompromising security. People with high fame and name are exposed to high risk. These people need security from the local and police government. The people included in this list are- Prime Minister, President, Vice President, High Court and Supreme Court judges, Chief Ministers, Governors, Cabinet Ministers and Service Chiefs of Armed Forces.
Who provides Z plus security and to whom?
The National Security Guards (NSG), Indo- Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), Special Protection Group (SPG) and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) are amongst those forces that provide security. The security is to be provided to people who are prone to risks and danger to their lives like celebrities, politicians, VIPs, and sportspersons. In India, around 450 VIPs get high security amongst which 17 gets Z+ security.
The most rigorous security is provided by the SPG. The SPG group provides security to the Prime Minister and their family members. Below it is the NSG which guard VVIPs. But a negative point in the NSG security is that in recent years, people are observed keeping an NSG (National Security Guards) just for the status purpose. To come to its rescue, we have the home minister on our side, who has imposed a rule that NSG security will not be given to a person by just seeing his/her status instead, a person’s threat will be the wholesome reason for providing NSG. This decision of the home minister has proved to be very productive as more and more of the NSGs who were reserved just for the status perspective are now being released. The freed up NSG Security is required for other missions like acting as a security consultant and providing aid for special operations like counter-terror and counter hijack operations.
An inside view of the National Security Guards (NSG)
The NSG (National Security Guards) was established in 1984. It is a unit of armed forces that was wholly and solely made for combatting and dealing with the terror activities and issues within the country. They are also called black cats because of their black outfit and a badge of a cat in their uniform. It was after some time, that the NSG was hired for providing security to the VIPs and the VVIPs. Each command of the NSG is highly trained in martial arts and combat skills. They carry weapons like Glock knife, pistols, machine guns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, shotgun, and other mechanical systems. The most important weapon out of them is Koch MP5 Submachine gun and Heckler. Security guards are not allowed to carry pepper spray and batons. The person who has a Z plus security pays 15-20 lakh per month to the security guards including food and shelter.
What is it like to be z plus secured?
A person who is Z plus secured is one of its kind on its own. Since only 17 members are included in this list, they must have something different from others who are Z, X or Y secured. Money counts as the first point, fame, and name as the second and position and status as the third. But the person that observes this security sometimes feels difficult to handle it. If the protectee wants to go out of the house without the black cats, he should probably skip the idea because this would never be possible. Every single place that the protectee travels, he is followed by a certain number of people around him as a shield. The protectee has a PSO i.e., Personal Security Officer, which needs to be contacted in case the VIP wants to visit someone. The PSO contacts local authorities to help them clear traffic issues. Not only this, but they also have a patrolman who is placed at every intersection to stop and clear traffic as the protecting escort arrives.
Coming to the protection of the VIP's house, all the locks are electromagnetic. There are guards and dogs. Even the dogs in their houses perform two shifts of day and night and watch the whole area. Cars used by the NSGs are NIJ level III or IV. But if this is not allowed by the government, then the personal car of the protected can also be converted into a protective one. The car of the protectee is followed and lead by two or more cars with a red flag on them. These represent the start and end of the security cavalcade. No other vehicle can ever enter in between the succession.
We know that Z plus security offers the tightest, highest and safest security with the most number of personnel, but it should not be concluded that a person under this security is always safe. Everything this has a pro and con. There have been many situations in the past which confirms that even unassailable security like Z+ can’t be blindly trusted. Some examples are, Pramod Mahajan who was shot dead, Indira Gandhi who was killed by her own security guard, Rajiv Gandhi who was killed in blast irrespective of the number of personnel around him and an encounter specialist, Rajbir Singh who was recently killed. But we can’t despair and sit down after this. Every aspect has a negative and positive impact. All a VIP can do is ensure unconquerable security around him to provide a shield from the outside vulnerable and threatening world. After all, prevention is better than cure.