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Living on the edge

Protecting one of the largest oil refineries in the Middle East is not the only responsibility that detective Kodur Venkatesh takes up


AHMEDI PROJECT is spread across 40 sq km of arid land. Situated in Kuwait, this is one of the largest oil refineries in the Middle East, producing about two million gallons of oil every day.

And guarding this State-owned `black gold' field is Kodur Venkatesh's MIB team — the operation is called Shuaiba Guard Project.

Venkatesh, founder, Advanced Group, Advanced Detective and Securitas Limited, personifies the adage `if you are not living on the edge, then you are taking too much space'. Protecting institutions — temples, mosques, airports and ordinance factories, preventing sabotage and tracking assassins, reads his work profile. "We also do pre-employment, breach of trust and dual employment checks. As also tracking school children, a drug trail, to check if they are visiting peddlers on their way. We also get many matrimonial cases, keeping a tab on erring spouses," he says.

Sounds familiar? Thanks to the sleuth oriented TV serials and flicks. "It's what you see in films, but painful in real life. You have to wait for months, for that crucial day. And, it is risky. You need to have an anonymous identity except maybe when you have to go to the court to depose evidence," he says.

Headquartered in Bangalore, the agency has branches in other major capitals in the country.

"Explosions can take place anywhere. We have a 2,000-strong team to monitor developments. Also, we have a special trained dog squad with breeds specialised in sniffing drugs and explosives," he says.

Smooth sleuth

Hailing from Anantapur, the former Deputy Superintendent of Police studied in Badruka College and Osmania University. "Ours is the first agency to have an ISO 9001-2000 certification and to go global," he says proudly.

Venkatesh is the visiting faculty for CRPF, central intelligence agencies such as CBI and SPG, honorary faculty at Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel National Police Academy and the State police training institute. Many MNCs and IT firms in the twin cities are his clients.

"Hyderabad has a comparatively lesser crime rate than Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore," he observes.

Apart from protecting infrastructure, he is also involved in philanthropic activities. "We specialise in community guarding, say a religious place run by a charitable institution. In places of high crime rate, murder of senior citizens and armed robbery, we take up Neighbourhood Watch Scheme to sensitise residents to take care of themselves and also extend our guarding services," he says.

Talking about his 24X7 vocation, "today, there is a great demand for detective services here as you have in advanced countries," he observes, as he hops on to his next flight. Another call. Perhaps for industrial security, sabotage or asset protection.

SYEDA FARIDA

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