In the wake of a jawan alleging poor quality food being served at border posts by uploading videos in social media, the BSF has launched a special telephone-based helpline in New Delhi for its personnel to register their grievances in an “anonymous” fashion, till January 31. Officials said BSF Director General K K Sharma on Thursday held a satellite-based ‘sainik sammelan’ (troops conference) with all his field formations in the country from New Delhi where he asked the jawans to let him know their grievances in an absolutely secret manner.
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They said, the DG made a specific point and publicised two telephone numbers placed at the force headquartersin New Delhi saying the jawans and officers can register any complaint on these links and their name, rank and designations will not be sought while making these calls. Sharma, they said, told them that this helpline will function till January 31 and post that he will ensure action in all the genuine complaints.
“While anonymous complaints are not encouraged or accepted anymore in government organisations, the DG gave a one-time window for such an arrangement in order to ensure that all genuine complaints are registered fearlessly by the troops. Action will be taken once the complaints are compiled,” they said.
The numbers are not being publicised as it may be misused and it has been circulated during the satellite-based ‘sainik sammelan’, they said on Thursday. Officials added that the BSF DG also explained to his men and women about the multiple forums and avenues available to them for grievance redressal.
Sharma also informed the personnel that a special vigilance team has been constituted in the force headed by an Inspector General (IG) rank officer and this unit would be conducting surprise checks and raids at field formations and forward locations of the BSF. The 2.5-lakh personnel strong BSF was raised in 1965 and is primarily tasked with securing India’s borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh apart from rendering a variety of internal security duties.
In videos uploaded on social media, BSF constable Tej Bahadur Yadav had alleged that while government procures essentials for them, the higher-ups and officers “sell it off” in an “illegal” manner in the market and they have to suffer. He had also posted other videos saying the quality of food served was not of good quality. A BSF fact-finding team, led by an Additional DG, visited the said camp Thursday and is preparing a final report into the incident and the quality of food “available and served” to the troops.