Pillars equipped with infrared beam and smart sensors have been installed along the porous riverine border with Bangladesh at the Sunderbans to check rampant infiltration, smuggling and these will become operational after three months. A senior BSF official today said that the smart sensors were a technological answer to the growing problem of cross-border crimes. The project would be first launched in a three-four kilometre-stretch along the border, the BSF official in South Bengal told PTI. "The project will start in the next three months as we are waiting for the monsoon to get over.
After that we will observe the devices till December. "If everything goes well, the new system will be in place permanently by January next year," he said. According to BSF sources, the cost of tbe installation of the infrared-equipped pillars per kilometre will be around Rs 25-30 lakh. "Although funds are always a matter of concern, we will increase the coverage area from three to four kilometres to the entire stretch of the border where we don't have proper fencing due to the treacherous nature of the terrain," another BSF official said. Of the 4,096-km Indo-Bangladesh border, a stretch of 2,216.7 km lies in West Bengal, out of which 300 km is riverine border with Bangladesh in the Sunderbans. The BSF carries out patrolling in the dense mangrove forests and areas where the rivers meet the Bay of Bengal. The infrared pillars and smart sensors will be monitored through a satellite-based signal command system and they will have night and fog-operability tools, the BSF officials said. The sensor will give out blips to alert border guards, they said. The paramilitary force is using a laser wall technology along the Indo-Pakistan border and it has reaped benefits, they said. The BSF sources said the installation of infrared and smart sensors was part of the Centre's plan to keep a tight vigil on the Indo-Bangla border following intelligence inputs that terrorists and anti-national elements were exploiting the unfenced areas and riverine borders. "In the Bengal frontier, it became a priority after terror attacks in Dhaka last year. There were inputs that terrorists and anti-national elements were exploiting the unfenced areas and riverine borders," the officials said. The Union home ministry and the BSF had expedited the installation and activation of the laser walls along the western front after the Pathankot terror attack in January last year.