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Pak Rangers may have helped in Samba infiltration
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May 16, 2008 17:41 IST

Maintaining that the role of Pakistani Rangers in the recent infiltration bid could not be ruled out, the BSF Friday said it would enhance its force strength by 1,000 in this sector and deploy high-tech gadgets.

Admitting that BSF had thought that the fencing was "impregnable", its Director General A K Mitra said "it is a lesson and we have learnt it... We are enhancing the strength by 1,000 personnel and deploying electronic gadgets which includes 22 hand-held thermal imagers."

He said the role of Pakistan Rangers' role in recent infiltration bid in this sector "cannot be ruled out" as "some cartridges used by the Rangers have been found."

Mitra's visit to Samba came in the backdrop of May 9 infiltration bid by militants from Pakistan and an encounter in which two terrorists were shot dead in the sector. Four civilians including a photo-journalist and two army jawans were also killed in the encounter.

To prevent any such infiltration bid in the future, Mitra said the fencing along the border at Samba would also be moved 100 metres towards the international border.

He said though the force had thought the fence was "impregnable", their "misunderstanding" has been cleared with the recent infiltration bid which he said was "partly successful as two to three people might have infiltrated."

"Militants had carried out recce before choosing spot for infiltration," he said.

About the re-fencing, Mitra said the 'bund' along with all vegetation would be cleared. Mitra also said two more battalions are being relieved of counter-insurgency operations in Kashmir and they will now be posted in the Jammu region as reserves. Because of re-fencing 654 acres of land would be released for farmers, the DG said adding, the force would like to encourage them to do farming and it is there to protect them.

About support by Pakistan Rangers, he said the possibility can "never be ruled out". Mitra said two flag meetings were held with the Pakistan Rangers who have assured the force of extending their full cooperation to prevent such attacks. About infiltration from Bangladesh, he said it was a cause of concern but "the infiltration from that side is more of an economic migration."

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