The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Monday said former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh continued to have Z plus security, a day after The Hindu reported that the Special Protection Group (SPG) would be withdrawn from his security detail shortly.
An MHA spokesperson said, “The current security cover review is a periodical and professional exercise based on threat perception that is purely based on professional assessment by security agencies. Dr. Manmohan Singh continues to have a Z+ security cover.”
The Central Reserve Police Force is likely to take over his security cover. Around 35 commandos will provide round-the-clock security to him under the changed set-up.
The SPG, an elite protection force, was set up in 1985 after the assassination of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
The force comprising 3,000 officers meant for the Prime Minister, former Prime Ministers and their families would now be tasked with protecting only Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her children Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Former Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee continued to have SPG cover from 2004 when he demitted office till his death in 2018.
During his tenure that began in 1999, the Vajpayee government conducted a major review of the SPG’s operations and decided to withdraw its protection to former Prime Ministers P.V. Narasimha Rao, H.D. Deve Gowda, and I.K. Gujral.
Manmohan Singh continues to have Z+ security: MHA – The Hindu