The Centre has approved a proposal for the integration of communication and surveillance equipment to monitor activities on the Jammu border. Stretched over 500 km, the command and control network will be established at the International Border (IB) with the Border Security Force. Using optical fibre, the project aims to integrate surveillance equipment such as different types of cameras, sensors, radars and intrusion detection systems, officials said.
The move comes days after two unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) dropped Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) inside the Indian Air Force (IAF) base station in Jammu in what was suspected to be the first drone attack, originating from across the border. Six drones have been spotted by BSF troops along the IB over the past 15 days.
The officials said the command and control software will be able to undertake facial recognition, identify persons moving in and out of an area and detect unattended objects. The network will be able to provide voice and data connectivity to each Border Out Post (BOPs) and help close monitoring of activities on the borders using 24×7 video surveillance, live monitoring and playback of archived video and data simultaneously, he explained.
“While drones are emerging as a security threat, the border guarding forces have been unearthing cross-border tunnels in Jammu for the past few years. The origin of these tunnels has been found towards Pakistan. To stop cross border infiltration, a robust surveillance and monitoring system needs to be put in place,” said a senior government official adding that the command and control system will be integrated with alarm-triggered automatic events in various alarm configurations.
The work on hi-tech surveillance systems along the IB is part of the Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System (CIBMS), he added. CIBMS is an integration of gadgets and technologies to ensure surveillance of the borders. CIBMS is expected to cover 2,000 km of India-Pakistan and India-Bangladesh borders to help improve the capability of BSF in detecting and controlling cross border crimes like illegal infiltration, smuggling of contraband goods, human trafficking and cross border terrorism.
After the Jammu drone attack, DG of National Security Guard (NSG) and the CISF acting chief, along with MHA officials, visited Jammu to examine the safety of vital installations and critical infrastructure. As per the MHA, critical installations have been categorised as A, B, C, D and E, in view of their threat vulnerability. At present, there are more than 700 critical installations mapped out by the central agencies.