Threat perception: high alert continues at ICP
A light machine gun (LMG) mounted on a vehicle parked near the entrance to the newly built Integrated Check Post (ICP) is not a usual sight for routine visitors or traders who are accustomed to seeing the men in khaki moving around in the vicinity of the ICP.punjab Updated: May 18, 2012 14:08 IST
A light machine gun (LMG) mounted on a vehicle parked near the entrance to the newly built Integrated Check Post (ICP) is not a usual sight for routine visitors or traders who are accustomed to seeing the men in khaki moving around in the vicinity of the ICP.
Moving a couple of yards towards the barbed wire fence leaves one with the impression that some threat looms. This is clear after seeing jawans of the Border Security Force (BSF) hanging close to or standing in freshly dug up trenches close to the fence as their eyes scan the Pakistan territory.
"We are on high alert and have beefed up security at the Attari-Wagah border after a reported threat to Pakistan's portion of the ICP came from a Pakistan-based terror organisation called Tehreek-e-Talibaan," IG BSF Punjab Frontier Aditya Mishra told HT on Thursday.
The Attari-Wagah border went on high alert on Wednesday following intelligence inputs about the threat. The alert will continue for the next five days after which the situation would be reviewed, the IG said.
The IG said the BSF was not taking chances despite the threat sent to the Pakistan side of the ICP. He said security had been beefed up for the evening Retreat Ceremony.
He said extra manpower had been deployed at the ICP and the area where the Retreat Ceremony is held. "We have taken additional security measures in a 5-km stretch on either side of the ICP. Additional weaponry has also been pulled out and certain sensitive points along the border have been identified," he added.
Asked whether the BSF was coordinating with the Pakistan Rangers on the threat, Mishra said, "Weekly meetings with the Rangers are routine in which certain border safety measures are discussed."
BSF commandants and their deputies are in constant touch with their jawans manning the border outposts on either side of the ICP. Besides foot patrolling and vigil from border observation posts during the day, special steps have been taken for the night.
Besides the BSF, the Amritsar (rural) police that protect the area outside the ICP have also stepped up security. The LMG-mounted vehicle outside the ICP is of the state police; also, more police personnel have been stationed outside the ICP and on the highway leading to the border.
Amritsar (rural) police SSP Preetpal Singh Virk said they were coordinating with the BSF on the security set-up outside the ICP and along the highway. He said a close vigil would be maintained on visitors and vehicles coming for the Retreat Ceremony.