The BJP-led NDA government today ordered complete sealing of Assam’s border with Bangladesh by June next year, fulfilling an electoral pledge of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) within a week of assuming power in Assam to check illegal immigration from the neighbouring country.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh issued the order at a high-level meeting attended by top Home Ministry officials here.
During the meeting, the Home Minister directed that the Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam should be sealed completely,” a Home Ministry official said.
In the run up to recent Assam Assembly elections, BJP had promised to seal the Indo-Bangladesh border in the state completely to check illegal immigration from the neighbouring country.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has said that sealing of the borders with Bangladesh in two years is one of his two top priorities.
The Home Minister also directed that full use of technological solutions be made to secure sensitive areas along the borders.
This will involve networking of equipments like high resolution cameras, radars, unattended ground sensors, optical fibres, infra red sensors, aerostats, hand-held thermal imagers etc. and integration of these with command and control architecture.
The total length of the Indo-Bangladesh border is 4,096 km of which 284 km falls in Assam.
The meeting was told that besides deployment of adequate number of battalions of Border Security Force in Assam, 224 km fence has been constructed for sealing of Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam.
However, there are 122 locations (60.7 km) in Assam where physical barrier is not present.
In order to achieve the objective of sealing the Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam, it was decided that 100 locations covering 11.9 km will have physical barrier i.e. fence and 22 locations covering 48.8 km. of riverine areas will have non-physical barriers including technological barriers which will be achieved by June, 2017, the official said.
Additional Director General, Border Security Force and Additional Director General (Border) CPWD are already on site visit on Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam to prepare comprehensive plan for sealing the border by June, 2017 by means of physical and non-physical barriers.
Besides the Home Minister, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju reviewed various aspects of the border management in the country.
Secretary (Border Management) in the Home Ministry, Susheel Kumar along with senior officials of briefed the Ministers about the progress of border security infrastructure, programmes of border management and the way forward.
It was informed that 4,374 km fence, 5,329.6 km border roads, 3,974 km floodlights and 2420 nos Border Out Posts (BOPs) have been constructed along the different international borders for security of the frontiers.
Further, major impediments hampering the development of border infrastructure have been resolved during last two years which will increase the pace of development of border infrastructure in coming years, the official said.
In the meeting it was also outlined that almost all the remaining infrastructure works at the border will be completed in next three years, the official said.