GUWAHATI, Jan 11: Frequent changes in the modus operandi resorted to by criminals have posed as a major challenge before the Border Security Force (BSF) in controlling transborder crimes in the Indo-Bangladesh border area, admitted Inspector General (IG) of BSF Frontier Headquarter Rajesh Kumar while addressing a press conference here today.
Kumar stated that especially the cattle smugglers change their modus operandi very frequently in committing the crime as a safeguard from the counter measures put in place by the BSF personnel on the international border.
But he also claimed that in recent times positive results in controlling smuggling and transborder crimes have accrued from simultaneous coordinated patrols in both day and night hours by the BSF and Border Guards Bangladesh (BGB).
“Mutual understanding and cooperation between BSF and BGB has helped in resolving many border issues on the border besides in maintaining peace and tranquility,” Kumar said.
BSF Guwahati Frontier has been assigned to guard a stretch of 509 km-long Indo-Bangladesh border in West Bengal and Assam, which includes 91.726 km-long riverine borders, char land and undulating grounds. According to the BSF, this is a very complex stretch of international border area as the population lives in close proximity on both sides of the demarcating line and has ethnic and cultural similarities which poses a serious challenge in matters of guarding the border.
As per data revealed by the IG of BSF Frontier Headquarter, in 2020 BSF personnel seized as many as 22,321 cattle, 29,688 bottles of phensedyl, 3256.59 kg of ganja and 68,684 yaba tablets during routine operations on the international border between India and Bangladesh. The seized items will together cost around Rs 20.70 crore. During the same period, BSF also apprehended 35 Bangladeshi nationals and 263 Indian nationals for their involvement in smuggling and other trans-border crimes.
In 2019 the BSF seized 22,324 cattle, 18,252 bottles of phensedyl, 1126.15 kg of ganja and 22,635 yaba tablets and apprehended 27 Bangladeshi nationals and 219 Indian nationals.
Kumar further informed that the BSF also established two anti-human trafficking units under the Guwahati Frontier on the international border and as a gesture of goodwill and on humanitarian grounds, a total of 12 Bangladeshi nationals who had crossed the border inadvertently, were handed over to the Border Guards Bangladesh in 2020.
“Apart from maintaining the sanctity of the Indo-Bangladesh Border, BSF Guwahati Frontier is also actively engaged in helping the border population. Taking forward this spirit of the force, numerous civic action programmes and medical camps in all the under command sectors and units were organised in the past one year,” Kumar added.