'Infiltration, Smuggling of Contraband, Narcotics, FICN and Arms/ Ammunition are the Biggest Challenges'
Director General, Border Security Force, Subhash Joshi
Director General, Border Security Force, Subhash Joshi The recent incident in Jammu has raised questions on fencing on the border. What is your assessment of the incident and how do you think Border Security Force (BSF) can handle this challenge of infiltration?
Fencing erected in the area of Jammu border is intact. The BSF is handling the challenges of infiltration by the laying of observation posts, nakas and patrolling. Besides this, constant vigil on gaps is maintained by the troops with the help of electronic surveillance equipment e.g. Battle Field Surveillance Radar (BFSR), Hand Held Thermal Imager (HHTI), Night Vision Goggles (NVGs) etc. where border fencing is not erected due to riverine area.

Did you deploy the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) for the border surveillance operations?
BSF has its own surveillance equipment which is quite effective.

The fencing doesn’t totally cover the International Border (IB) and there are some gaps. How does BSF handle these gaps in order to ensure there is no infiltration?
Effective round-the-clock surveillance is carried out by patrolling (on foot, by boats, camels, horses and vehicles), laying nakas (border ambushes) and by deploying observations posts equipped with electronic surveillance gadgets all along the IB. Riverine segments of the IB are being patrolled and dominated with the help of watercrafts of the BSF water wing.

What do you think are the biggest strengths of the force and the challenges faced?
The men deployed on the border round the clock to ensure security of IB are the biggest strength of the force. Infiltration, smuggling of contraband, narcotics, Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN) and arms/ammunition are the biggest challenges.

What is your assessment of threats on the eastern and the western borders?
Ceasefire violation of counterpart (Pakistan), cross border smuggling of FICN, arms/ammunition and narcotics, militant activities and infiltration are the main threats on the eastern and western border.

How do you communicate with the border forces of Pakistan and Bangladesh at the battalion level?
At the battalion level, the BSF communicates with the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) through flag meetings in which agenda points from both sides are discussed and issues resolved through dialogues. Minutes of the meeting are drawn for future reference. In case issues are not resolved at Commandant level, then they are referred to higher headquarters.

Matters which require immediate attention of the Commanding Officer of the counterpart is immediately brought into his notice telephonically as well as through letters, and action is taken accordingly. Besides that, to resolve minor border management issues pertaining to trans-border crimes, Company/Border Out Post Commanders meet with counterpart through flag meeting.
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