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Business News/ News / India/  How AI will help boost security in Ayodhya ahead of Ram Temple ‘Pran Pratishtha' — CEO of the firm behind it explains

How AI will help boost security in Ayodhya ahead of Ram Temple ‘Pran Pratishtha' — CEO of the firm behind it explains

The Uttar Pradesh government has deployed AI surveillance in Ayodhya, with the help of CCTV cameras. The AI software will use facial recognition and reverse facial recognition to identify objects and people based on general inputs and movements.

UP government will be using artificial intelligence-based surveillance system in Ayodhya during the Pran Pratistha ceremony at Ram Temple on January 22.

As Ayodhya gears up for the Pran Pratishtha ceremony at the Ram temple on January 22, the Uttar Pradesh government is pumping in crores of rupees for high-level security to maintain law and order in the city.

Also Read: Ram Temple consecration: Uber launches electric auto rickshaw services in Ayodhya

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For the first time, futuristic AI surveillance will also be used to identify suspicious activities and track down miscreants in the city, which is buzzing with preparations for the Ram temple ceremony.

Speaking to Mint, Atul Rai, co-founder and CEO of Staqu Technologies, the company behind the AI-powered security system in Ayodhya, said, "There will be a high level of AI surveillance in Ayodhya for people with serious criminal records, including terrorism, murder, etc. For this, we've integrated the CCTV cameras, already installed in various parts of the city for purposes like traffic and community management, for efficient artificial intelligence-based city surveillance."

Also Read: Akhilesh Yadav receives Ram Temple opening invite; says ‘will visit with family but…’

Atul Rai co-founded Staqu in 2015. The AI-based startup provides state-of-the-art image recognition, language-independent proprietary speaker identification, and text processing, including sentiment analysis, text classification, and summarization services.

The AI surveillance CCTV cameras will cover famous hotspots of the city like Kanak Bhawan, Hanuman Garhi, Shri Nageshwar Nath Mandir, Ram Ki Paidi, and Ram Janmabhoomi.

Also Read: Lord Ram chose his devotee to rebuild his temple: LK Advani on PM Modi inaugurating Ayodhya's Ram Mandir

The Indian tech startup is using its audio and video analytics software, Jarvis, to facilitate the use of AI to identify suspicious people and activities. The AI software will use features such as facial recognition and reverse facial recognition, enabling the identification of objects and people based on general inputs and movements.

“Reverse facial recognition will enable police to search for a particular person across the city using a photograph. The software would also allow them to search for a person or an object based on attributes entered in text form," explained Atul Rai.

Also Read: Ayodhya Ram Temple news: Rajasthan bans liquor on Jan 22. List of other states declaring dry day on consecration event

“For example, you can search for a person wearing red trousers and a blue shirt, and the AI software will identify such people passing through different cameras in the city. The software can also help identify suspicious vehicles with mismatched registration numbers. So the AI software extracts this attribute of the car and matches it with the e-vahan Parivahan database and gives the results in real time," he added.

Through Staqu's Trinetra software, which has enabled the UP police to digitise criminal records, these AI-integrated cameras will also have access to a database of 8,00,000 people with criminal backgrounds.

AI surveillance in Ayodhya done as pilot project

The AI surveillance in Ayodhya began in the first week of January. It is currently on a one-month pilot project. "The whole idea is to test the concept for a month as it is not a fully active project. The pilot's success will pave the way for a full-fledged implementation of the project in the city in the future," said Rai. Currently, the Gurgaon-based start-up is implementing the pilot project as part of the expansion of its collaboration with UP Special Task Force (STF).

The pilot project utilised the 10,000-20,000 CCTV cameras already installed in the city, including those present inside the temple premises, Ram Janm Bhoomi, and other parts of the city. CCTV cameras' easy availability made integrating Jarvis for AI surveillance easier.

However, the various construction sites in the city posed several challenges for the company. “Ayodhya is in an inauguration mood, a lot has been done on the ground by various government departments. There were operational challenges in executing the project, but we managed all these things with the help of the police and the government," said Atul Rai.

Utilisation of artificial intelligence for security often raises concerns about data protection and privacy. Commenting on the AI-based CCTV monitoring, N. S. Nappinai, Advocate, Supreme Court & Founder- Cyber Saathi, said, “Even concerning the use of the CCTV camera, globally multiple jurisdictions have clear laws for protecting privacy whilst using CCTV cameras in public spaces. This is a lacunae in Indian laws that need to be addressed expeditiously.

When you combine the use of CCTV cameras with AI, that becomes the next step in terms of monitoring. If you are doing it with a legitimate aim of security then it ought to be done with effective checks and balances that will assure privacy is not violated."

She also highlighted that before the usage of such technology for governance purposes “the first step ought to be to put down certain guidelines, advisory or ideally laws of regulation to make sure that the technology is not going to be abused"

Underlining the need for transparency in data collection and access by a private entity in such projects, Nappinai said, “When it comes to the use of technology or public-private partnership for the same, transparency on the extent of data collected, access is given to the private entity or usage thereof. Without addressing these concerns, engagement of private entities may affect individual rights to protection of their data."

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