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The US President, Mr. Barack Obama & First Lady Michelle Obama being warmly welcomed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in New Delhi on January 25, 2015.(PIB Photo)

Delhi turned fortress as Obama arrives for Republic Day event

New Delhi, Jan 25: Over 20,000 policemen guarded the US President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle on the first day of his three-day visit here, an official said Sunday.

Policemen, including paramilitary personnel, were deployed on the routes Obama’s 60-vehicle cavalcade took in the city.

Several roads leading to the ITC Maurya Hotel, where Obama will stay, and the Rashtrapati Bhavan remained out of bounds for public for several hours.

As Obama visited the Rashtrapati Bhavan, Rajghat and Hyderabad House, the routes saw heavy deployment of the security personnel. His cavalcade was also being escorted by senior Delhi Police officials.

NSG (National Security Guard) snipers could be seen outside the venues. Over 20,000 policemen were deployed on several roads.

People going towards central Delhi faced traffic snarls for hours and were only allowed to move after the Obama’s long cavalcade passed.

Roads like Prithviraj Road, Humayun Road, Rafi Marg, Krishna Menon Marg, Ashoka Road, and K.G. Marg were closed for several hours. Police said Sardar Patel Marg would remain shut till Obama is in the national capital.

Obama will be the chief guest at the 66th Republic Day parade to be held at central Delhi’s Rajpath.  Over 1,000 NSG snipers along with 44,000 security personnel from Delhi Police and paramilitary forces will keep an eagle’s eye over the Republic Day celebrations.

The NSG snipers will maintain a hawk-eye vigil from high-rises within a two-km radius of Rajpath, from where the US president along with President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will witness the Republic Day parade.(IANS)


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