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BSF to use solar lights along Indo-Bangla border


AMBAR MUKHERJEE | Kolkata, January 6, 2012 11:42
Tags : Boder Security Force (BSF) | BSF to use solar lights along Indo-Bangladesh border |

With a rise in power cuts, the Border Security Force (BSF) has decided to use solar energy to illuminate long stretches of  Indo-Bangladesh bordering areas passing through West Bengal. The move is aimed to intensify vigil and curb anti-social activities such as smuggling and infiltration along the Indo-Bangladesh border passing through the state.

The BSF has already started a trial run to install solar lights in Phoolbari area in Siliguri, Jalpaiguri district. “The installation has already been done and the lighting scheme is on  a trial run basis,” said a senior BSF official.

India shares a total 4096.7 km of its land border with Bangladesh. West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram are the states which share the border with Bangladesh. West Bengal shares a total of 2216.70 km boarder area with Bangladesh.

According to sources in the BSF, the trial run has begun on the basis of a directive from the Union Home department. The move is aimed to prevent infiltration and to stop cross border crime. The sources said that the long stretches of the border areas have not yet been electrified by the state power department. The electrification has not been done despite the fact that BSF has paid an amount to the tune of Rs 1 crore to the power department for the purpose. “Load shedding is a regular feature in rural Bengal. The intermittent power cuts in the bordering area pose serious challenges to ensure security and maintain proper vigilance," a BSF official said.

The introduction of solar lights is also aimed to reduce cost for maintaining the vigils. During load shedding, the BSF authorities are forced to use diesel generator sets as back up. “The solar lights will also help to reduce our fuel bills. We spend a huge amount every month to purchase diesel to run the generators during loadshedding,” the official said.

According to him, the prices of diesel have been rising on a regular basis.

Each solar set will cost Rs 33,000 and can illuminate 40 metre area.  “But this would be only a one time expenditure,” he said.

According to the plans, the solar lights will be installed  in 100 km stretch of the Indo-Bangladesh border, if the trail run is successful.

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Issue Dated: Feb 5, 2017