December 17, 2017 5:32:44 pm
In a major development reported after decades of cross-border insurgency along India’s eastern frontier, the BSF has said that camps and hideouts of Indian Insurgent Groups (IIGs) across the country’s frontier on the Bangladeshi soil have been reduced to “almost zero”. The director general of the Border Security Force, K K Sharma, told PTI that this first-time achievement was the result of an excellent and positive cooperation between the border guarding forces of the two countries over the past few years.
The BSF’s counterpart in the neighbouring country is the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB). “Whenever we have information about exodus or insurgents of the northeastern states in Bangladesh, we share the information and immediate raids are undertaken (by the BGB). “As a result, the number of training places and hideouts of these insurgents have been reduced to almost zero,” the BSF DG said.
If there are some still existing, they are of a floating nature, Sharma said, indicating that no permanent camps of these banned terror and insurgent groups now exist on the Bangladeshi side. “I congratulate our counterparts (BGB),” the DG said. The development is being seen as a major victory of the security forces over the insurgency and terrorism situation along the Bangladesh border in the northeast.
For the past so many years and decades, the BSF used to hand over a list of IIGs and terror groups to the BGB during the DG-level talks seeking action against them, a senior officer said requesting anonymity. “The numbers of these IIGs used to be 150-200 everytime a list was handed over to the Bangladeshi side. That situation has now changed and the IIGs are now on the run, without being able to stay put at a place on the other side for long,” the officer said.
Another official of the Indo-Bangla border guarding force explained the current situation. In the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) of Bangladesh, he said, like Khagrachari and Bandarban located opposite Tripura and Mizoram, did not had any “habitation and domination” from the BGB and the insurgent groups were using these locations for their anti-India activities.
“With the consistent pursuance during the DG-level talks and at other levels, the BGB did some crackdown in these forests and the IIGs are now on run,” the officer said. The officer, quoting an official document, said the BGB has now made some arrangements to have their “permanent camps” in these areas so that the activities of insurgents and other criminals are checked and no regular bases of the IIGs can come up.
The official said the major IIGs operating in these areas were National Liberation Front of Tripura and Manipur valley groups like Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup (KYKL) and United National Liberation Front (UNLF). In two more districts of Bangladesh – Moulvibazar and Sherpur – that adjoin North Tripura and the Cachar region of Assam and Meghalaya, the official said, the United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA) had camps.
“Crackdown by the BGB has also happened in these regions and the situation is much better now. The BSF too has pressed its manpower in these areas to check the activities of the IIGs on the other side and inform the BGB quickly in case any activity is detected or brought to our knowledge,” he said.
The BSF and the BGB, since 2015, have also begun conducting simultaneous coordinated border patrols to check crimes, terrorists and insurgent activities along the border they guard. The BSF is tasked to guard the 4,096-km-long India-Bangladesh frontier.
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