Small Chinese drones carrying drugs frequently intrude into India: BSF DG
Nov 30, 2021
NEW DELHI: Small Chinese-made drones, carrying narcotics in 95 per cent cases, are flying over from across the border into Punjab and Jammu regions and these flights are a ''cause of concern'' for which technology solutions are being scouted actively, BSF director general (DG) Pankaj Kumar Singh said on Tuesday.
Talking to reporters on the eve of the 57th Raising Day of the paramilitary, the BSF head said at least 67 drone sightings have been made in this year till now along India's western border with Pakistan.
'Right now, the frequency of drones that are coming to our country are fairly small and these are by-and-large Chinese-made drones...they are very good...and carrying small payloads and in 95 per cent cases they are carrying drugs.''
''We have installed some kind of anti-drone systems at the border and they are working fairly ok but we are in the process of getting more and more technology,'' DG Singh said. He, however, added that covering the entire 2,300 kms (of India-Pakistan border) with anti-drone system will cost a lost and hence a ''trade-off'' can be thought upon.
Like if we have a vital installation or important asset on the border the anti-drone system to safeguard it can be installed there first, followed by other locations, Singh said. ''There is no foolproof system available in the entire world (regarding counter-drone tech)...there is no way as of now by which we can intercept, stall or make them (drones) de-active. We are in the process...this (getting anti-drone technology) is our number one priority I can tell you,'' he said.
The force has shot down two drones till now along the Pakistan border, he said. He said the force has also come across instances of drones carrying weapons payload from across the Pakistan border into India and ''dropping them into our area''. We are in touch with intelligence agencies and state police about these droppings as every time such a flight takes places somebody is informed on the Indian side to take delivery.
The DG said the force was getting ''wonderful cooperation'' from the Punjab Police in this context. Talking about underground tunnels being found along this front, especially in the Jammu area, he said the force was keeping a vigil on this activity and devising new methods to check these structures that aid infiltration.
Armed terrorists have used such tunnels, that are as deep as 30 ft, 3-4 ft in width and height and 100 m below the international border fence, to infiltrate into the country.
Singh said the force is looking for ''low-cost technology solutions'' with regard to creating 'smart fencing', sensors, radars and even countering the drones or the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) threat.
He said procuring defence and surveillance products from the market was good but they were facing a problem when it came to service or replacement of a worn-out part and hence, the force was focussing on getting more and more in-house technology solutions so that repairs and maintenance are quick.
The BSF has a strength of about 2.65 lakh personnel at present and it was raised on December 1, 1965.
It guards over 6,300 km of the Indian fronts with Pakistan on the west and Bangladesh on the east of the country.