Home ministry focuses on border fencing to keep infiltrators at bay

In the backdrop of ceasefire violations along the LoC, the home ministry has been pulling out all the stops to pre-empt any infiltration attempts


MoS for home affairs Kiren Rijiju. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint
MoS for home affairs Kiren Rijiju. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

New Delhi: Cross-border firing continued to be exchanged between Indian and Pakistani forces on Thursday, two days after three Indian soldiers were killed and one of them mutilated along the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir.

“There is a lot of action along the LoC. India is responding and we will not tolerate any unprovoked incidents,” minister of state for home affairs Kiren Rijiju said.

In the backdrop of ceasefire violations along the LoC, the home ministry has been pulling out all the stops to pre-empt any infiltration attempts.

While fencing work along all the border areas is under way, completion of the work is still some time away.

“The total sanctioned length of fence along the Indo-Pakistan border is 2,063km, out of which 2,003km has been completed. The ongoing fence work along the complete Indo-Pakistan border is targeted for completion by December 2018,” Rijiju said.

Although the LoC remains a flashpoint, with Indian forces launching pre-emptive attacks against terrorist camps, it’s not the only frontier that India needs to worry about. Statistics reveal that it is actually the Indo-Bangladesh border that has seen the maximum infiltration attempts this year.

According to home ministry data, 771 cases of infiltration have been registered, 1,990 infiltrators caught and 15 killed. This is far higher than the 242 infiltration cases reported from the border with Pakistan, where 81 were caught and 39 killed.

The Indo-Myanmar border has also seen substantial activity, with 95 infiltration cases being registered, 110 infiltrators held and 14 killed.

There has been a long history of migration from the eastern borders. Earlier this year, the home ministry’s border management secretary, Susheel Kumar, stated that the Indo-Bangladesh border in Assam was to be sealed within a year in order to check cross-border movement of militants.

“The total sanctioned length of fence along the Indo-Bangladesh border is 3,326km, out of which 2,731km has been completed. The ongoing fence work along the Indo-Bangladesh border is targeted for completion by March 2019,” Rijiju said.

While Rijiju stated that there were no plans to construct any concrete walls along India’s international borders, other measures had firmly been put in place to scan the border areas effectively.

“Effective domination of the borders by the border guarding forces through round-the-clock surveillance is in place. This involves patrolling, laying nakas, establishing observation posts all along the border and strengthening of existing defence,” the minister said.

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