Home >Politics >Policy >India plans tech-backed border fencing to prevent infiltration, boost security

New Delhi: India will test its Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System in October in an attempt to stop cross-border infiltration, said a senior home ministry official seeking anonymity.

This will be the third trial of the Rs20,000-crore project after technology mismatches stalled two previous attempts, another government official said.

“The project will be tested out in October this year. It will use all possible technologies available to us—radar, sonar, laser and drones—to monitor movements and sounds along the international border. If this kind of fencing is successful, it will be implemented along the Indo-Pakistan (border) and all other border areas as well," the official cited above said, on condition of anonymity.

Following the attack on the Pathankot air base in January 2016, the home ministry had formulated the project to re-assess the existing mechanism of border security.

“While it will employ all land, water and space technologies available in India, the ministry stated that its ultimate aim was to reduce the number of people patrolling the border. Instead, the fencing would be routed through a CCTV network, the control room for which will be 2-3 km inland and it will be monitored at all hours. When the need arises, then the men will be deployed," said the home ministry official cited above.

A senior government official involved in the project said the Border Security Force (BSF) had bought a 21-km border fence from Israel, after receiving funds from the home ministry.

“If the implementation of the first 21-km fencing is deemed a success in October, then the fencing will be laid out in batches of 21km each along the entire border," the government official added.

According to home ministry data, in 2016, 242 cases of infiltration were reported from the border with Pakistan where 81 were caught and 39 killed. At the Myanmar border, 95 infiltration cases were reported, with 110 infiltrators held and 14 killed, Mint reported in November.

There has been a long history of migration from the eastern borders. Earlier in 2016, the home ministry’s border management secretary Susheel Kumar stated that the India-Bangladesh border in Assam was to be sealed within a year in order to check cross-border movement of militants.

The home ministry official said the Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System would be modified according to the terrain.

“The terrain is very different in areas such as Jaisalmer, Punjab and along the Indo-Bangladesh border. This technology will be such that the fencing and the scanning will be modified according to the topography of the region," the official added.

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