In its fight against the drug menace and intrusion, the Border Security Force (BSF) is strengthening its first line of defence by erecting a new barbed wire fence in the Amritsar sector of the border.
The fence that was erected almost two decades ago was worn out and damaged at many areas, causing a concern for the border troops.
Now as part of strengthening the fence, work has started in the stretch of 33 kilometres of the border. The BSF is replacing the fence with a new one.
Some areas that were vulnerable have been taken as a priority and work is in full swing to erect a new fence.
Not only the fence is newly laid but also some mechanisms are added so that Pakistani smugglers cannot smuggle narcotics into India.
The DIG, BSF, MF Farooqui, said:"The fence is our first line of defence and this project aims at strengthening it further. The fence was erected almost 20 years ago. At many places,the fence was damaged and rusted, which was a major concern for us."
"So as part of the project, in the Amritsar sector new fence will be erected in the area of 33 kilometers. In this new fence, we are also having a concrete layer in between so that no weeds grow. Apart from this, dense barbed wire will be inserted to the height of 5 to 6 feet so that the Pakistani smugglers cannot insert pipes in the fence to smuggle narcotics or weapons," he added.
The BSF will use anti-rust paint to prolong its life.
This new fence in the initial phase is 12 to13 feet in height. "We have also sent a proposal to increase the height of the fence by 3 to 4 feet so that the notorious elements are discouraged from throwing some contraband over the fence, said the DIG, BSF.
"The fence is a big deterrent for anti-social elements and the priority is to strengthen it. Security has been beefed up in the area where the work is going on, he said.
In the initial phase, the work of replacing the fence is on in the areas of Roranwala, Pul Moran, Udhar Dhaliwal, Kahangarh, Mullankot and few other places. If the BSF is to be believed already 30 per cent of job has been completed.
The BSF has also demanded that in the initial phase more vulnerable areas get a new fence. Also some areas have been identified wherein the position of the fence will also be changed, Farooqui said.
Notably, Pakistan has erected no fence along the border. It is the Indian fence erected in the Indian territory that helps in keeping the anti-national elements at bay.
CCTV cameras on the cards
As part of increasing the vigil, the BSF DIG informed that there were also proposals to install CCTV cameras along the fence. Some high-tech gadgets such as radar-based siren systems will also be part of the project.
Farooqui said:"Trials have been held and demonstrations have been given by private companies. It is felt that high-tech cameras can be a great help to spot the movement in extreme climatic conditions. We have thermal imaging cameras already but some advanced cameras can further help."
Quote: "The existing fence was erected two decades ago and was rusted and worn out at many places. This was a major concern for us. So in the initial phase, 33 kilometers area has been identified where fence will be replaced and some more changes are being done to strengthen the first line of defence." --DIG BSF MF Farooqui