In the Forefront

Home minister Amit Shah takes the salute at BSF’s Raising Day

Subhashis Mittra

The valour and unwavering spirit of the Border Security Force (BSF) in protecting the nation’s boundaries is a testament to their dedication. Prime Minister Narendra Modi made this encouraging remark on the Raising Day of the border guarding force in December. “On BSF’s Raising Day, we laud this excellent force, which has made a mark as a guardian of our frontiers. I would also like to appreciate the role of BSF during rescue and relief work in the wake of natural disasters,” the Prime Minister added.

Amit Shah BSF Raising Day

Speaking on the occasion in Hazaribag (Jharkhand) on December 1, Union home minister Amit Shah claimed that India’s two major borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh will be completely secured in the next two years, with work underway to completely plug gaps in about a 60 kilometre stretch along these two fronts.

The home minister, who took the salute at the ceremonial parade, said the Narendra Modi government has fenced and plugged gaps in about 560 kilometres of the India-Pakistan and India-Bangladesh borders in the last nine years since it came to power at the Centre. These gaps were being used for infiltration and smuggling. All the gaps in these two borders on India’s western and eastern flank respectively are being plugged and work in only about 60 kilometres is left. In the next two years we will entirely secure these two borders, Shah said.

The two borders—2,290 kilometres of India-Pakistan International Border and 4,096 kilometres of India-Bangladesh border—are marked by long riverine, mountainous and marshy areas where it is very difficult to erect fences and hence the BSF and other agencies use technical gadgets to check infiltration.

“I firmly believe that a country cannot develop and prosper if its borders are not secure… the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has led the country to the moon with the Chandrayaan mission, G20 Summit and brought the economy from the 11th to the fifth spot, and this was all possible due to our forces deployed for securing the borders like the BSF,” Shah said.

The home minister asserted that whenever a BJP government took the reins of power in the country, border security was prioritized—from the government of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to the Modi government. “While Atalji’s government brought an ‘integrated’ approach for border security, the Modi government assimilated security, development and democratic processes along with strong infrastructure and initiation of welfare measures for the local population living on the front,” he said.

According to Shah, the government installed floodlights along the 11,000 kilometres of this border, created 452 new border posts, maiden observation towers in the Harami Nala area of Rann of Kutch, 510 observation towers, and got electricity connection to 637 borders posts while 500 such facilities were linked with piped water along these two borders over the last nine years.



BSF moots Marine Battalion, Drone Squadron to secure Sundarbans

To secure the strategic Sunderbans region, the world's largest mangrove forest, along the India-Bangladesh border against smuggling and infiltration, the BSF has hit upon a plan to raise a marine battalion comprising more than 1,100 personnel, a squadron of about 40 drones and all-terrain vehicles.

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