BSF gets success after extension of territorial jurisdiction: LS told

NEW DELHI, July 26: The Government on Tuesday said the Border Security Force (BSF) has achieved success in curbing smuggling of drugs and other contraband items following the extension of territorial jurisdiction along India’s borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai said in Lok Sabha that BSF’s extension of territorial jurisdiction in Punjab and some other states was aimed at empowering the border guarding force to discharge its duties more effectively.
Rai said the move has been helpful in the wake of use of technologies such as drones and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles – generally having long range – by anti-national forces for surveillance as well as for smuggling of arms, narcotics and fake Indian currency notes. “Due to increased territorial jurisdiction, the BSF has achieved success in curbing smuggling of drugs and other contraband items,” he said in his reply to a written question.
The minister also gave a list of items seized by the BSF after the implementation of the decision. These items include Pakistani drones, a large number of arms, ammunition and drugs.
In October last year, the central government had extended the jurisdiction of the BSF to give its officers the powers of arrest, search and seizure to the extent of 50 kilometres, instead of earlier 15 km, from the borders inside Indian territories in Punjab, West Bengal, Assam and Tripura.
Opposition parties, including the Trinamool Congress which rules West Bengal, had criticised the Centre’s decision.
The BSF has been authorised to take action under CrPC, Passport Act and Passport (Entry to India) Act. (PTI)