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When Hyderabad House turned fortress
Onkar Singh in New Delhi | March 02, 2006 15:24 IST
Over 500 security men drawn from the Special Protection Group, National Security Guards, Intelligence Bureau, Delhi Police and the Border Security Force with the officers of the American Intelligence and the president's personal security guards were protecting Hyderabad House when US President George Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh held talks.
Journalists covering the event were allowed to carry tape recorders and mobile phones, which are usually not allowed during the visit of a diginatary.
Sharpshooters took up positions in key positions, including the terrace of Hyderabad House, which was completely sanitised by dog squads and bomb detection equipment to make sure that things were under control. American sharpshooters on top of Hyderabad House kept a vigil on the surroundings through binoculars.
The overhead shamiana was removed on the request of the American intelligence officials forcing the two leaders to stand in the burning sun and answer questions from journalists -- two each from Indian and American scribes.
Even after the press meet was over, the journalists were forced to stay indoors in Hyderabad House as the two leaders were still having their chat.
"My Lord! This is a huge number of securitymen," said an American journalists once he saw the security officials trooping out one by one and line up in front of Hyderabad House waiting to be picked up by their official vehicles.