The Border Security Force (BSF) has transferred two top officials in the Gurdaspur sector in the aftermath of the terror attack on the Pathankot airbase.
BSF Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Gurdaspur sector, N K Mishra, and Commandant S S Dwas, have been replaced by DIG A Shreenivasan and Commandant Inder Parkash Bhatia.
Both state and central investigators believe that the groups of terrorists who attacked the Pathankot base and, earlier in July 2015, the police station in Dinanagar, entered Punjab by crossing the state’s border with Pakistan, which the BSF Gurdaspur watches.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) suggested after the Pathankot attack that the terrorists had entered near the border village of Bamial in Gurdaspur. NIA investigators have repeatedly visited a gap in the fencing on the Ravi river near Bamial village.
A day after the Pathankot attack, the union Home Ministry had asked the BSF to begin an operation to comb the border in both Punjab and Jammu for evidence of the terrorists’ entry.
A similar operation had been launched after the Dinanagar attack as well — the BSF had, however, declared that there was no evidence of infiltration across the border in Punjab. The Force had rejected the Punjab Police’s reconstruction of the route allegedly taken by the Dinanagar attackers; the police, on their part, had been unable to produce evidence to back their theory.
The FIRs on the murder of taxi driver Ikagar Singh and the kidnapping of Gurdaspur SP Salwinder Singh and his companions were registered at the Narot Jaimal Singh police station, a few kilometres from the border. Most of the area in the police station’s jurisdiction touches the border.
Though large sections of the over 500 km-long border in Punjab is fenced, there are enough gaps at the points at which the Ravi crosses the border that are vulnerable to infiltration. These points are watched over by the Gurdaspur and Amritsar sectors of the BSF.
The Punjab Police and BSF have disagreed on drug smuggling from across the border, besides locking horns over the Dinanagar terror attack.
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