VIP security in India

After the assessment of danger by intelligence departments, it is decided what kind of security category will be provided to the person.

By   |  Published: 11th Sep 2020  6:08 pmUpdated: 11th Sep 2020  6:09 pm

In India, security is provided to the dignitaries by the police and the local government. The decision to provide VIP security to a political leader or a specific person depends upon the level of threat perception. After the assessment of danger by intelligence departments, it is decided what kind of security category will be provided to the person. 

  • India has devised graded security coverage for its VIPs. The security cover for VIPs is decided as per the Blue Book and Yellow Book. Blue Book standards are applied in the cases of the President, the Vice President and the Prime Minister. 
  • Prime Minister of India gets SPG or Special Protection Group coverage. The President’s security is the responsibility of an elite household cavalry regiment of the Indian Army called the President’s Bodyguard.
  • For other VIPs, Yellow Book standards are followed. The security cover grades such as Z+, Z, Y and X are covered in the Yellow Book.


A person facing a threat files an application at the police station nearest to his/her residence. Then, the case is forwarded to the intelligence agencies to find out the threat posed to the person.

When the threat is confirmed, a committee comprising the Home Secretary, Director General, and the Chief Secretary in the State decides which category of security is to be given to that person. After this, the details of the person are also given to the Union Home Ministry for formal approval.

Agencies responsible for VIPs security?

Different agencies are responsible for providing different categories of security to VIPs like  Special Protection Group(SPG),  National Security Guards(NSG),  Indo-Tibetan Border Police(ITBP) and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF). The security of ‘Z +’ category is provided to highly specialized individuals/leaders/players and film stars. NSG extends the ‘Z Plus’ category security to VIPs and VVIPs on a large scale.

Different categories of security

Special Protection Group

The SPG, a force of 3,000 active personnel at present, was formed in April 1985, after Prime Minister Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her bodyguards in October 1984. It now provides secuirty to the PM and his immediate family members.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the only person with SPG-level security. Under this, a classified security detail is given exclusively to the PM.

Black suitcase

The SPG personnel are equipped with modern weapons like FNF-2000 assault rifles, automatic guns and some dangerous pistols like 17-M.They also carry a black. It is actually a portable bullet proof shield or a portable folded ballistic shield which can be opened during the attack and provides the protection of NIG Level 3. If the security forces sense danger or suspicious activity, they will have to flick the folded shield downwards to deploy it quickly to secure the Prime Minister.

Z+ category 

– Z+ is the highest category security in India.
– It offers a security cover of 55 personnel, including 10, NSG Commandos and police Personnel.
– Each commando is an expert in martial arts and unarmed combat.
– Z+ security is provided by the NSG commandos equipped with sophisticated MP5 guns, and modern communication gadgets.
– Only 10-17 VIPs in the country are provided the Z+ security. This includes Home Minister Amit Shah, Former PM Manmohan Singh, Congress leader Sonia Gandhi among others.

Z category Security

– This is the second level of security.
– Z category provides a security cover of 22 personnel, including 4 or 5 NSG Commandos and Police Personnel.
– It is provided by the Delhi police or the ITBP or CRPF personnel along with one escort car.
– Z security is provided to several actors.

Y category security

– This is the third level of security.
– Y category has a security cover of 11 personnel, including 1 or 2 Commandos + Police Personnel.
– It offers two personal security officers (PSOs).
– There are a considerable number of people who get this category of protection in India.

X category security

– This is the fourth level of security.
– X category has a security cover of 2 personnel.
– It is provided by one personal security officer. Again, a considerable number of people get this category of protection in India.

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