Even as the gala Independence Day celebrations unfolded at the Red Fort on Friday morning, many were left gawking at the SPG commandos accompanying the Prime Minister. Armed with automatic weapons and wearing bulletproof vests, these commandos almost looked like movie stars as they evoked much awe among the audience.
Sources said this was the special SPG commando uniform which is not used for all occasions. "These are elite commandos trained specifically to engage and neutralize terrorists. On Friday, they were led by an IPS officer who was himself dressed like that," said a security official.
The official said that most of the SPG commandos are drawn from the NSG and then imparted even more training to protect the PM and his family members. "Even the bulletproof vests they wear are not ordinary ones. These vests can withstand firing from an AK rifle from point blank range. They are also trained to use the lethal 9mm Uzi sub-machine guns," said the official.
These commandos were armed with an MP5 gun and also a 9mm pistol which was strapped around the right thigh. The black jacket over the bullet proof vest and large knee guards, to enable them to crawl in case of an emergency, made them look menacing. "Each one of them is armed with enough ammunition to engage terrorists for a long time.
The ammunition is strapped around the waist," said the official. All SPG commandos remained in touch with each other through a wireless system with an earphone and speaker loosely hanging around the neck.