Chief Security Officer of the Andhra Pradesh Raj Bhavan Mohammed Shokat Ali has revealed that former governor ND Tiwari’s Officer on Special Duty ‘exclusively handled’ the visits of the women who appeared on the sex tap purportedly fearing the octogenarian and he also over-ruled security protocol and norms to make sure that there was no official records of their visits.
Prominent national daily Indian Express quoted Ali as saying: “A record of each visitor’s name and address, entry and exit is kept, but in the case of these women, this was only on paper. Their visits were exclusively handled by OSD Aryendra Sharma. Overriding security protocol and security officers, Sharma would inform the check-post at the gates and security that such and such car belonging to the Raj Bhavan’s Motor Transport Department carrying ‘guests’ of the Governor should be allowed inside without security or identification checks.”
In response to a query as to why no questions were asked, he said, “The OSD himself gave the orders, we had no say. Sometimes, security check-posts were informed that ‘family members’ were coming in, at other times it was ‘guests’. No one dared to check or verify. These cars went out or came in sometimes late in the night.”
The daily, however, didn’t carry Sharma’s comment citing his unavailability despite several attempts. He had earlier claimed that the tape was sexed up.
During Tiwari’s tenure, said Ali, security was reduced to providing pilot and escort to the Governor when he ventured out. “What happened inside Raj Bhavan was all handled by the OSD,” he added. As per Raj Bhavan officials, this contrasts sharply with conventional procedure.
“Getting an appointment with the Governor is a long process. Usually requests are forwarded to the Intelligence Bureau. Only after Intelligence clears them, is an appointment given. Appointments are not given to everyone who wants to meet the Governor, especially persons with no particular purpose. The Officer on Special Duty makes arrangements usually for guests visiting Raj Bhavan,” said Press Secretary to Governor S P S Raja.