Guwahati: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh today painted a grim security situation in the country's border with Myanmar and Bhutan where there were reports of insurgents, weapons and drugs crossing over and said that his ministry was taking measures to effectively manage the international borders.
240 villages with over two lakh population within 10 km of the Indo-Myanmar border were living without any worthwhile security cover, Singh told a security meeting attended by the chief ministers of all Northeastern states here.
“They are at the mercy of the insurgents. A similar situation prevails along the India-Bhutan border,” he said calling upon the chief minsters of the region to pay attention to this crucial area of security.
“We must take care of the development along with the security of people living along the international borders. You would be glad to know that under the Border Area Development Programme (BADP), we have enhanced the share of the region from 30 per cent to 40 per cent,” Singh, accompanied by his deputy Kiren Rijiju said.
He said that a committee headed by Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) R N Ravi had been constituted to suggest measures to effectively manage the Indo-Myanmar border.
The committee is likely to submit its report within the next few days and the government would take action as per its recommendations, he said.
He suggested opening and strengthening of police stations in the border areas to instil a sense of security among the people, which is crucial for successful implementation of the Centre's ‘Act-East Policy'.
The Union Home minister also urged the chief ministers to provide land for border fencing by acquisition on urgent basis wherever it was pending.
Singh said the region had a huge stockpile of illegal firearms which were smuggled in from across the border and sold here and beyond.
“Existence of illegal weapons will encourage crimes and vitiate the security eco-system of the region. I would urge the chief ministers to launch sustained drives against illegal weapons and make their respective states free of such arms,” he said.
Noting that Mizoram, Tripura, large parts of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya are “almost free of insurgency”, Singh said it was time deployment of central forces was reduced in the Northeast.