Delhi Police have installed around 1,337 CCTV cameras in the city costing Rs 70 crore

By Neetu Chandra


It may sound incredible but closed-circuit television cameras have been installed in the Capital at a cost that would suffice to set up a full-fledged security system elsewhere.

The Delhi Police, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and other organisations have spent more than Rs 70 crore for CCTV cameras to be set up in various areas of the city.

RTI query

According to an RTI reply sought by Harpal Singh Rana, a social activist, the Delhi Police have installed around 1,337 cameras in various areas for Rs 68.03 crore.

An overview of Sarojini Nagar Market in New Delhi, when security had been beefed up in the wake of the Mumbai terror strike

An overview of Sarojini Nagar Market in New Delhi, when security had been beefed up in the wake of the Mumbai terror strike

Similarly, the NDMC has installed 53 CCTV cameras in different areas, including markets, for Rs 1.20 crore which works out to a whopping Rs 2.30 lakh per camera.

"Providing security to citizens with CCTV cameras is a good move but that can be no excuse for waste of public money," said Rana.

"If cameras are bought in bulk they can be purchased at a cheaper price," he said.

"Only industrial set ups and units use high-end cameras that cost in lakhs. Normal CCTV cameras cost anything from Rs 2,000 to Rs 50,000 depending on the quality and features," said Karan Mohale, from Maha Security solutions, a prominent CCTV camera supplier in Delhi.

Cameras on rent

It was revealed that after the high court blast two years ago, the Delhi Police installed 67 cameras in Tis Hazari for security purposes. Interestingly, the CCTV cameras are on rent. The rent of the normal cameras was Rs 288 and for the moving CCTV cameras was Rs 495 for the first 90 days. It is now `262 for normal camera and Rs 453 for the moving camera.

"At this huge cost, the camera could have been bought. The police and the NDMC have spent more than Rs 70 crore on CCTV cameraswhen normal cameras can be bought for a maximum of Rs 10,000 each," Singh said.


CCTV cameras have been installed in important areas of the Capital such as India Gate and Chanakyapuri.

The cameras are also installed at Connaught Place, Lajpat Nagar, Karol Bagh, Chandni Chowk, G B Road, Sarojini Nagar, Palika Bazar, Ramlila Ground and all border areas for tight security and monitoring.

Delhi Police officials claim that the tenders for obtaining CCTV cameras take years to process so the cost of the cameras today is not what it was years ago.

"CCTV cameras are used for crime prevention and monitoring of any illegal or suspicious activity. The tenders for buying cameras take time to process and the costs of cameras have gone down in the last few years, so the cameras available now are cheaper," said Rajan Bhagat, spokesperson, Delhi Police.

"I need to look into the cost of cameras bought by the concerned official," he said.

CCTV suppliers claim that though the prices have gone down they are not of the order which would justify the costs the authorities seem to have incurred on each camera.

"Earlier the high-end CCTV cameras used to cost around Rs 50,000; they are now available for Rs 15,000," said Rajesh Singh, a CCTV camera dealer at Chandni Chowk.

security concernes graphic