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Steel mesh to replace border fences

Nod for pilot in Assam’s Lathitila

The ‘rickety’ barbed wires along the Pakistan and Bangladesh border are being replaced with meshed fence made of steel and coated with anti-rust paint, a senior government official said on Friday.

India shares 4,096.7 km border with Bangladesh and 3,323 km with Pakistan.

The cost of around 1 km of fence is approximately ₹1.99 crore. The Border Security Force (BSF) that is deployed along the Pakistan and Bangladesh borders has been tasked to ensure that the fence is installed in a time-bound manner.

Currently a pilot project has been sanctioned at a cost of ₹14.3 crore at Lathitila in Assam’s Silchar district. The clearance was first given in 2016. “This will be a complete overhaul of the security system. The unique quality of the new fence is that it cannot be snipped,” the official said.

He added that nobody can climb it. “There are many pockets along the border where the old barbed wires are so fragile that they can be destroyed with a mild push,” the official said.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah reviewed the functioning of the BSF on December 14 where various technological solutions to plug the porous stretches of the border was discussed.

The official said a comprehensive review was done and all the vulnerable spots along the eastern and western borders have been mapped and identified.

The Central Public Works Department (CPWD) is implementing the project and the contract has been given to a firm called AON Fencing & Gates, headquartered in Ireland.

The official said the border guarding forces have been asked to be on high alert as there are inputs of infiltration attempts from Pakistan once the winter subsides.

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 10:46:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/steel-mesh-to-replace-border-fences/article30537174.ece

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