Tuesday, January 27, 2009 9:01 AM (Mumbai)
Mumbai's popular ferry service will now have to move location. Five jetties that operate ferries to popular destinations like the Elephanta Caves will now move from the Gateway of India to the nearby Radio Club pier.
It has been prompted by possible threats to the Gateway of India and will cost the government Rs 30 crores.
"We have received intelligence inputs of terror threats at the Gateway of India. All the five jetties would be closed and shifted to new jetties, to be constructed at the Radio Club pier with all amenities for tourists," said Nawab Malik, Guardian Minister, Mumbai.
The ferries operate to Alibaug, Mandwa and Rewas, some of Mumbaikars' favourite weekend destinations, where many also have homes.
Several local harbour cruises also leave from the Gateway, which will be moved as well.
The area around the Gateway would be made into a pedestrian-only zone.
"CCTV and other electronic surveillance will monitor the crowd to protect the monument.We have had a discussion with the maritime department and the chief secretary to develop this into an area with an international feel to it," said Nawab Malik, Guardian Minister, Mumbai.
The 26/11 Mumbai attackers had come via sea and one of their targets was the Taj Mahal hotel facing the Gateway of India. That's the reason why the government does not want to take any chances with the city's security.