The Border Security Force is banking on the forest department in Rajasthan to bridge a gap of 32 km along the border with Pakistan in Jaisalmer district with heavy plantation to prepare the ground for proper fencing.
The dense plantation would help in stabilizing shifting sands of the Thar desert and help the BSF in building a permanent fence along the border. Currently, shifting sand dunes often cover stretches of the fence completely along the Shahgarh Bulge area or leave some stretch hanging in the air as the wind blows away the sand.
BSF officials had observed that forest department with its ‘Desert Development Programme’ had successfully sorted out the problem of shifting sand dunes by stabilizing sand with dense plantation in different areas.
The BSF discussed the issue of Shahgarh Bulge area with forest department officials and requested them for a solution.
Khyati Mathur, deputy conservativation officer in Jaisalmer said they have submitted a proposal to the BSF for dense plantation in that area.
“We have prepared the project on pilot basis and at initial stage we are planning dense plantation in 25-hectares area,” she said.
She said that according to the forest department’s estimates, it would cost between Rs 3 cr to Rs 4 cr. The forest department is waiting for the BSF’s reply.
Amit Lodha, BSF’s deputy inspector general (North) in Jaisalmer said the forest department’s proposal has been forwarded to force’s headquarters. “As soon as we get clearance from the headquarters, work will start,” he added.
Lodha said that the BSF was very hopeful about this project.
Rajasthan has a 1037-km long border with Pakistan. In 1996 the government had sealed the border with barbed fencing but 32.5 km of the border in Shahgarh Bulge area ran into the problem of shifting sand dunes.
Union home minister Rajnath Singh during his visit to Jaisalmer recently said the government would seal the entire 3,323-km long Indo-Pak border by constructing a wall.