Tuesday, November 19, 2013

BSF asks road institute to fence border in Gujarat

From Indian Express
VijaitaSingh : New Delhi, Mon Nov 18 2013
After failing to get help from the IITs, the BSF has approached the Central Road Research Institute (CRRI) to fence an over 100-km area along the 340-km Pakistan border in Gujarat.
Since Independence, the area has remained unfenced due to adverse weather and the swamp in the Rann of Kutch.
"We have to also construct BOPs, roads and install floodlights along the border. This has not been possible due to adverse weather and a difficult terrain," said a senior BSF official.
The Central Public Works Department and National Building Construction Corporation, which had been tasked with the construction, have expressed inability. The agencies had approached IIT Delhi and IIT Kanpur on behalf of the BSF to come up with a concrete solution to fence the border. "When the IITs failed to come up with a solution, we approached the CRRI. They are yet to submit a report," said the official.
In the absence of a fence, BSF jawans keep a constant vigil in the area braving extreme weather conditions.

Keeping this in mind, the Ministry of Home Affairs is actively considering sanctioning a "hardship allowance" to BSF men posted in the Rann of Kutch. A similar allowance is given to jawans posted in Maoist-affected areas and Jammu and Kashmir.
"Over 80 per cent of the land in this area is almost always inundated. We get little time to construct anything. Moreover, the high salt content corrodes poles and degenerates roads. We are yet to come up with a weather-proof solution," said the official. Officials are also exploring the use of stabilised operating platforms for surveillance in this area.

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