Amid rising heroin smuggling and intrusion of Pakistani smugglers into Indian territory along the Punjab border, a high-powered delegation of the Border Security Force (BSF) left for talks with Pakistani Rangers on Tuesday.
The 13-member delegation led by BSF director general Subhash Joshi crossed over to Pakistan through the Attari border. The DG will meet his Pakistan counterpart and a range of border issues will be discussed during the four-day meeting starting in Lahore. The meeting is a bi-annual affair.
The seizure of heroin by BSF troops has considerably gone up, while there have been frequent incidents of cross-border firing between Pakistani smugglers and BSF troops. A few Pakistani smugglers have been gunned down by the BSF this year. Seizure of arms, ammunition and fake currency have also taken place regularly along the Punjab border.
The BSF's flag meetings with Pakistani Rangers have failed to bring positive results, with the latter remaining in the denial mode over firing by Pakistani smugglers from areas near Pakistani border outposts.
During this meeting, the BSF is likely to take up strongly the issue of regular flow of heroin from the Pakistani side. Also, the issues of inadvertent border crossing and some constructions along the border are likely to be taken up.
The BSF delegation will return to India on December 28. Although the BSF DG did not interact with the media before leaving for Pakistan, he is likely to give details of the outcome of the meeting on coming back.