Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has been accorded with a CRPF Z+ VIP security cover which will also cover his wife Gursharan Kaur. The move comes after the government recently withdrew the SPG protection that had been accorded to him.

According to officials, Singh and his wife will have about 45 armed commandos guarding them round-the-clock at their residence at 3, Motilal Nehru Road in New Delhi and when they are travelling across the country.

Furthermore, Singh will get a advance security liaison (ASL) protocol where the security personnel will conduct an advance recce of the venue that is to be visited by the two VVIPs.

The Central Reserve Police Force will soon take over the charge after consultations with the SPG, Delhi Police and central intelligence agencies, the officials said.

The Special Protection Group (SPG) protection given to Singh was recently withdrawn following a review by multiple security agencies. The government’s decision was conveyed to Singh who was India’s prime minister from 2004 and 2014.

The decision to withdraw the SPG security, the country’s highest grade of protection, was taken after a three-month review involving the Cabinet Secretariat and the Ministry of Home Affairs with inputs from various intelligence agencies, officials said.

With the removal of Singh’s SPG cover, the top-notch security cover will now be given only to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Gandhi family — Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her children, Rahul and Priyanka.

The SPG was set up in 1985 after the assassination of prime minister Indira Gandhi. Parliament passed the SPG Act in 1988, dedicating the group to protecting the prime minister.

With Inputs From PTI