Monday, 30th October 2017

E- paper

Arms show big draw at hockey world cup venue

Odisha police display weapons, technology and canine squad at fan zone to promote awareness

By Lelin Mallick in Bhubaneswar
  • Published 1.12.18, 2:43 AM
  • Updated 1.12.18, 10:06 AM
  • a min read
A foreigner poses with an automatic rifle at the police kiosk at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. Picture by Ashwinee Pati

An Odisha police kiosk set up in the fan zone at Kalinga Stadium, which is hosting the Men’s Hockey World Cup, has become a crowd puller.

A large array of weapons, from  .303 rifles to sophisticated Israel-made sniper rifles, are on display at the kiosk.

Sports officer, Odisha police, Bibhuti Bhusan Parida said such a kiosk had been set up for the first time in the state.

“Our motive was to inform and educate people about the weapons and other equipment police in the state uses. We have also kept sniffer dogs of K9 squad, along with pigeons of the police pigeon service on display. Besides, our personnel are also spreading awareness on various online services of the state police at the kiosk,” said Parida.

The weapons section includes a wide range of arms such as micro Uzi, MP5, MP9, AK47, Insas and carbine, along with rocket and grenade launchers, used in anti-Maoist and anti-terrorist operations.

Similarly, equipment used for communication, including walkie-talkies and VHF sets, are also in display. The suit used by bomb disposal squad is also there at the stall. Around 10 police personnel, mostly of the Special Operation Group, are answering the queries of visitors.

“We have tried to chronicle arms the state police have used over a period of time. We will also conduct a quiz programme on hockey for visitors on Saturday,” said a police officer. The police band has also been deployed at the kiosk to play music for the visitors.

A number of visitors, especially kids, are thronging the kiosk that will remain open during match hours throughout the tournament. A number of schoolchildren were also spotted posing with weapons and taking photographs with dogs of the K9 squad. “We have only seen such weapons in films, but here we can hold them and even ask the police about their functioning. The stall provides a great picture of the work done by the state police,” said Sandhya, a schoolchildren.