NEW DELHI, Aug 18 - Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal asked the National Buildings Construction Corporation (India) Limited (NBCC) and Central Public Works Department (CPWD) to immediately take up work on the 48.11 km porous areas of Indo-Bangla border on a war footing. He also asked the Border Security Force to use proven technology to intensify its vigil and put a spanner on the alleged influx and smuggling from across the border.
The Chief Minister, who chaired an official level meeting here on Friday said, �Fencing of the unfenced areas of Indo-Bangla border would lead to �complete sealing off the border between the two geographical entities and it will also stop illegal movements from across the border�. During the meeting, NBCC and CPWD pointed out that of the 48.11 km unfenced border between Assam and Bangladesh, fencing of 13.38 km would be completed as soon as the flood water recedes. However, erecting fence on the remaining areas involves enormous challenges as nearly 3-km stretch particularly in Silchar sector is full with deep gorges. It may be noted that Silchar sector has 61 gaps, Dhubri 31 and others two and altogether Rs 26.92 crore is required to plug these gaps.
Sonowal asked the NBCC and CPWD to start the fencing work right from October, so that the whole process can be completed before the onset of the next monsoon. Sonowal while sharing his observation of the border fencing during his recent visit on August 15 in the flood-affected areas in Mankachar-South Salmara district said that the submerged barbed wire fencing get corroded which result in wear and tear. He, therefore, asked the NBCC and CPWD the authorised construction agencies to use anti-corrosion agent to lend durability to the fences. The construction agencies also informed that there are no issue regarding land acquisition which would help them to complete the fencing work within the stipulated time.
The Chief Minister, further asked BSF to use proven technology to guard Indo-Bangla border and rein in over all illegal movements along the border. The BSF informed the Chief Minister that the organisation has upped its ante with latest technological solutions developed by IIT Delhi, DRDO and Ministry of Information and Technology as it will be discussing nitty-gritty of the technology in a high level meeting to be held on August 21 in the national capital. He moreover urged the BSF to use their manpower besides deploying equipment like camera, radar, sensor, fibre optic, etc., for an error-free vigilance on the entire stretch of Indo-Bangla border that Assam shares with Bangladesh.
Sonowal also suggested that the proposed 30-km-long Phulbari bridge over the Brahmaputra connecting Dhubri with South Salmara may also have this technological solution in place to help the bridge bolster border security with Bangladesh.
The Chief Minister also emphasised on improving the quality of roads leading to border areas for better patrolling. He said that quality border roads apart from encouraging seamless border communication would strengthen security mechanism.