Rise in infiltration attempts, drug smuggling after Punjab poll announcement

By Amresh Srivastava

New Delhi, Jan 24 (IANS): Soon after the announcement of assembly polls in five states including Punjab, there has been a substantial increase in attempts at infiltration and bid to smuggle arms and ammunition and narcotics across the western and northern borders. The Border Security Force (BSF) has stepped up vigilance on the border.

According to the BSF Western Sector officials, the attempts to send narcotics to Punjab via the western border have increased and on January 20, the force recovered around 7.250 kgs of heroin in seven packets on the international border in Amritsar sector while a Pakistani infiltrator was killed by the alert troopers on January 15.

Sources in the BSF said that the IGs of Amritsar, Firozpur, Jammu and Kashmir sectors have been directed to step up patrolling and increase the human intelligence network in the border areas of Punjab and other sectors. Night patrolling on the International Border has been scaled up despite severe cold and dense fog and the numbers of troopers have been increased for better surveillance on the border fence.

Infiltration attempts and the bid to smuggle narcotics have increased and these were expected as the Pakistan sponsored terror groups think that this is the right opportunity to derail the Punjab election. These activities were started in November - December last year, BSF officials of the Firozpur and Amritsar sectors said.

On January 18, 2022, the force shot down a Chinese made drone which was sent from Pakistan in the Amritsar sector. Again on January 11, the security personnel recovered 19.37 kg of opium, one pistol, 8 cartridges, one magazine and also 1.20 kg of heroin in Firozpur sector in Punjab.

These consignments were thrown across the border fence on to the Indian side near the International Border in the state.

The BSF had also recovered three AK-47 rifles, five kg heroin, four pistols, five magazines of AK-47, two pistol magazines and 14 rounds of AK-47 ammunition on January 3 while on December 26 last year, the Force recovered 34.34 kg heroin in Firozpur sector near the international border.

The BSF had shot down a drone in RS Pura sector in Jammu which entered from the Pakistan side on December 17 and also neutralized a Pakistani intruder in the same sector on December 13 last year.

About 104 to 135 militants are ready to sneak into the Indian side of the Line of Control (LoC), Raja Babu Singh, Inspector General (IG) of BSF Kashmir Sector, said on Monday.

Considering the Punjab election as an apt opportunity to reactivate the Khalistani movement in the state and also in other poll bound states where Sikh voters are in a majority, the ISI has activated all small and big terror groups which have been tasked to derail the poll process in the state, the sources in the security agencies said.

The BSF is fully capable to secure our western and northern borders and will foil all attempts at infiltration, narcotics smuggling and cross border terrorism, a senior BSF officer said here on Monday.



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