Amidst the tightest ever security measures, a special police team will be deployed to detect any counterfeit tickets to gain entry to Cricket World Cup venues in Sri Lanka, Police and Cricket officials said yesterday.
Police Chief Mahinda Balasuriya said there was information of counterfeit tickets being sold for the matches at the Premadasa, Pallekele and Sooriyawewa stadiums. “Along with Sri Lanka Cricket officials we will check every ticket and any persons detected with counterfeit tickets will be severely dealt with,” he warned.
Retired Major General Lawrence Fernando, who is in charge of SLC security, said strict measures were being taken to detect counterfeit tickets. “If counterfeit tickets are used it could lead to problems regarding control of crowds. But we are warning such persons not to make any attempts to enter the grounds with these tickets as tough action will be taken against them,” he said.
Meanwhile airlifting of cricketers to stadiums in the outstation venues in Pallekele and Sooriyawewa, deployment of more than 3,000 policemen in each of the match venues are among the security arrangements which have been put in place for the World Cup matches.
Air Force Spokesman Janaka Nanayakkara said they had obtained Defence Ministry permission to transport the cricket teams by air to Sooriyawewa and Pallakele.
Some 500 police vehicles have been deployed for work around match venues and to escort cricketers and officials.
The army also has been deployed to comb the jungles around the Sooriyawewa stadium.
Police on Friday issued a series of guidelines to spectators at the matches, imposing restriction on bringing certain items into the stadiums.
These include musical instruments, pens and flag poles. (See graphic on this page for the list)The IGP said that professional cameras and videos had been prohibited in keeping with a requirement of the International Cricket Council.
He said a special police team woudl be stationed inside the ground so that in the event of any violent incident they could take immediate counter action.