Bengaluru, May 14 (IANS) Its not a science fiction movie set, but the office of Bengaluru's Deputy Commissioner of Police (South), which now sports a thermal imaging surveillance system at its entrance to detect Covid suspects amid the pandemic.
"Thermal imaging based surveillance system to alert against anyone with fever in public places was installed in my office," DCP, South, Rohini Katoch Sepat said in a tweet.
Powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI), the thermal imaging system will detect individuals suffering from fever, a Covid symptom, by measuring their body temperature from afar and sounding an alarm if a visitor's temperature indicates a possible infection from the virus.
"As of now for demo purpose, this has been installed in my office. A lot of people are vising my office for passes and everything. The DCP office is having a lot of public turnover in the lockdown," Sepat told IANS on the need for a system like this.
Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya had referred the company offering the imaging solution to the DCP's office, considering the public epicentre it has become.
Sepat said: "We have to do all these things. It is the need of the hour, the more contactless things are the better. We have to move to contactless policing."
Citing how police the world over are using drones for assistance in their operations, she said that thermal imaging systems would be also of use.
Perched at the entrance of Sepat's office, the temperature detection system will scan every visitor for signs of fever to immediately alert and avert contact with that person.
"This is more of a safety precaution. We are handling a huge amount of public interface. We can't avoid it. I can't say that I cannot allow people," said the DCP, underscoring her need to be in regular touch with people.
"This is how we have to live for the next few months or years," she said.
Incidentally, Bengaluru South DCP office is yet to encounter a Covid patient as only a few visitors with borderline temperature were found hitherto.
Sepat said contactless thermal imaging surveillance systems can be extended to major centres of public activity such as airports, railway stations, bus station and others.
The DCP said the police department is creative and has to find a way out of every problem even as she aims to keep her subordinate officers safe and protected from Covid exposure.
Armed forces across the world are some of the earliest adopters of thermal imaging solutions.