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Security of borders can be ensured by bravery, alertness of soldiers, not by fencing: Amit Shah


NEW DELHI:  Pillars and fences along the borders are no match to alertness and bravery of soldiers guarding them which is further augmented by patriotic villagers living in close vicinity to the forward locations, Union Home Minister Amit Shah said on Thursday.

While launching a mobile application ‘Prahari’ prepared in-house by the BSF and the manual of the border guarding force, Shah also suggested that under the Vibrant Village Programme, the personnel should make efforts for increasing tourism to villages but did not further elaborate on it.

Security of the country’s borders cannot be ensured by pillars or fencing, but only by the bravery, patriotism and alertness of the soldiers standing on the border, he said.

The home minister said the BSF guards the most difficult border of the country. After former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee conceptualised ‘One Border One Force’, the responsibility of guarding borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh had come to the BSF.

He said the brave soldiers of the BSF are manning these borders with great vigilance, strength and promptness as well as consistent efforts.

Shah said the security of the borders can be ensured only when the border villages are populated. Along with the deployment of soldiers on the borders, only the patriotic citizens living in the village can provide permanent security and all the border guarding forces should strengthen them.

He said in the last three years, 26,000 kg of narcotics and 2,500 arms and ammunition were seized by the BSF. Although the anti-drone technology on the border is still at the experimental stage, it has been successful to a great extent, he said.

The home minister said in the last six months, the BSF has shot down 22 drones on the western border, which is a huge achievement. Success is also being achieved against the drones carrying weapons to spread narcotics and terrorism with nefarious intentions, he said.

Shah said a ‘BSF Drone/UAV and Cyber Forensic Lab’ has been set up in Noida, through which captured drones have been thoroughly mapped for their linkages and locations across the border.

He said fencing could not be completed at some places along the international border due to difficult topography but the BSF has developed in-house technology for electronic surveillance there, cost of which is very low but its efficiency is very high.

He said the BSF personnel have been able to secure the border with continuous vigilance and construction of 140 km of fencing and about 400 km of roads has been completed in difficult places.

Along with this, Shah said, more than 120 border out-posts have been constructed.

Shah said the app ‘Prahari’ has been created for allotment of houses to the BSF personnel and within two months of its launch, the housing satisfaction ratio has increased by 10 per cent, which is a huge achievement. He said that this is also a great example of proactive governance.

He said the ‘Prahari’ app is a great example of proactive governance and now jawans can get personal information and information related to accommodation, Ayushmann-CAPF and leaves on their mobiles.

Be it the GPF, bio data or grievance redressal on ‘Centralised Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System’ (CP-GRAMS) or information on various welfare schemes, now jawans can get all this information through the app and this app will also connect them with the portal of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

The home minister told all the senior officers of BSF that it is necessary that in the border districts all the welfare programs run by the government of India and state governments should be fully implemented with the help of the district collector.

He said if the administration can equip those people, who are leaving the border villages with the Pradhan Mantri Ayushman Bharat Yojana, they get a reason to stay in the village.

Along with this, Shah said, if they are provided with the facilities of gas, electricity and drinking water, then they will also feel that someone is taking care of them and they should stay here.

The home minister said the initiatives taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to make the country self-reliant should be implemented with priority in the border areas, and in this the security forces deployed on the country’s borders, especially the BSF, have an important role.

Shah congratulated BSF Director General Pankaj Kumar and his entire team for the awaited revision and update in 13 manuals which will increase the understanding of operations, administration and training and speed up the work.

He said he is sure that this will facilitate the work of all ranks of the BSF jawans and officers and the new initiatives will bring ease and convenience in the work of the BSF. (PTI)

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