To strengthen the security related infrastructures along the state borders, the Assam government has sanctioned Rs 100 crore and decided to further tighten the vigil along the frontiers, officials said here on Saturday.
An official of the Border Protection and Development Department (BPDD) said that in line with the MOITRI scheme for the modernisation of police stations, Assam government is all set to launch a scheme for the infrastructural development of the Border Outposts (BOPs).
He said that in the first phase of the scheme, 50 BOPs would be upgraded and an amount to the tune of around Rs 100 crore has been earmarked for the purpose. Subsequently, other BOPs of the state would be covered under the scheme.
“The sealing of the India-Bangladesh border is the topmost priority for making Assam free from illegal migrants from across the international border and for this purpose the border is being fenced by physical and non-physical barriers,” the official said.
The 263 km India-Bangladesh international border along Assam is being guarded by the Border Security Force (BSF) while the 267 km Indo-Bhutan international border is manned by the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). A second line of defence is being provided by the Assam Police.
Besides, Assam shares 2616.1 km inter-state borders with six northeastern states, excluding Sikkim.
The official said that BPDD is aimed to provide all round development in the remotest border areas of the state by creating infrastructural facilities and bringing the whole area to the level of all other developed urban areas of the state with all physical amenities and to instil a sense of security to the lives and properties of the border population.
An official release said that Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, while presiding over a meeting of the BPDD, said that for the efficient management of inter-state boundary areas and making the border areas’ development programmes successful, roads leading to the BOPs need to be made motorable.
“At the same time, provision should be made for uninterrupted power supply in the BOPs,” the Chief Minister said.
Sonowal said that the government is aware of the hardships the security personnel have to endure in manning the BOPs along the remote border areas.
He said that the security personnel posted for ensuring safety and security of the people living along the inter-state border areas deserve good facilities.
“Therefore, elaborate action plan should be put in place to facilitate good living conditions along with logistics for the people as well as police personnel along the fringe areas of the inter-state boundary,” Sonowal said.
The Chief Minister asked BPDD officials to chalk out an action plan on an urgent basis for the construction of good quality roads and bridges to reach even the impregnable areas.
Sonowal informed that the government would provide four motorcycles and eight bicycles to each of the 100 BOPs. Moreover, the government would also provide fuel for the vehicles.
The Chief Minister stressed on the importance of solving all outstanding boundary issues with the neighbouring northeastern states amicably through dialogue and asked the senior officers of the departments to have regular talks with their counterparts.
Sonowal also took stock of the situation prevailing along the India-Bangladesh border that Assam shares with the neighbouring country along with the ongoing exercise of the National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Chief Minister’s media advisor Hrishikesh Goswami, Chief Secretary Jishnu Baruah, Additional Chief Secretary to the Chief Minister Paban Kumar Borthakur, Additional Director General of Police (Border) Mukesh Agarwal, Commissioner and Secretary, Home and Political, G.D. Tripathi, Director Border Protection and Development Department Prabhati Thaosen and other senior officials of the government were present at the meeting.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday said India is willing to respond to any kind of transgression, aggression or unilateral action on its borders.
He was speaking at the passing out parade of various flight cadets of the Indian Air Force (IAF) who completed their pre-commissioning training at Air Force Academy in Dundigul.
“You are all familiar with the recent Indo-China stand-off in the northern sector. China’s attitude in times of crisis like Covid shows the intention of that country,” said Singh.
He said India demonstrated that it was not weak.
Singh also spoke about the western sector and highlighted that our neighbour keeps doing some nefarious activities on the border.
“Pakistan is fighting a proxy war through terrorism even after (India) defeating not one but four wars,” said the Defence Minister.
He said India is taking effective action against terrorists not only within the country but also by crossing the border.
“By taking effective action against terrorism, IAF in Balakot has made the entire world is aware of the strength of the Indian Army and its strong intentions against terror,” Singh pointed out.
The minister termed Goa Liberation War (1961), Indo-Pak War (1965), Bangladesh Liberation War (1971), Operation Meghdoot (1984), Operation White Sea (1999) and the recent Balakot exploits as golden chapters of not only the Air Force but also in the history of our country.
Meanwhile, he called upon the cadets to update knowledge in all technologies and military strategies.
“I suggest you to learn from history, know the present and prepare for the future,” said Singh during their combined graduation parade (CGP).
He said the IAF is working as a force multiplier and highlighted that the defence forces in Ladakh are equipped with necessary weapons, equipment, clothes and ration with full contribution from the Indian Air Force.
Singh was the Chief Guest as well as reviewing officer of the passing out parade at the Air Force Academy in Dundigal near Hyderabad.
He conferred the ‘President’s Commission’ to the graduating trainees.
The cadets were also presented with ‘wings’ and ‘brevets’ on successfully completing the flying and navigation training, respectively.
‘Wings’ were also presented to officers from the Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard and officers from friendly foreign countries on successfully completing their flying training at the academy.
As part of the event, an acrobatic display of SU-30 aircraft, Surya Kiran aerobatic team, Sarang Helicopter display team, Pilatus PC-7 trainer and fly past by formations of PC-7, Kiran and Hawk aircraft have been scheduled.
The Autumn CGP term, 206th course, happens to be the 100th course to pass out from the academy.
AFA will celebrate golden jubilee in 2021 on completing 50 years of its inception since January 16, 1971.