The Punjab government has sought 25 companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) and anti-drone gadgets for the Border Security Force (BSF) for protection from Pakistan-backed terror forces in view of the repeated incursion of drones from across the border. The request was made by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh during his meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday.

Citing the recent heavy influx of weapons, hand-grenades and IEDs into the State, with Pakistan’s ISI also raising the ante ahead of the Independence Day and in the run-up to the Punjab Assembly polls, the Chief Minister told Shah that the security situation was grave and needed the Centre’s immediate intervention.

The CAPF deployment is sought for Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Mohali, Patiala, Bathinda, Phagwara and Moga, as well as anti-drone technology for the BSF deployed at the borders. He pointed to the potential threat to the security of vital installations and public events being attended by highly threatened individuals.

Citing inputs from central and State agencies, corroborated by disclosures made by arrested terrorists, the Chief Minister said potential individual and mass indiscriminate targets include trains, buses and Hindu temples, prominent Kisan leaders, RSS Shakhas/Offices, RSS/BJP/Shiv Sena leaders based in Punjab, Deras, Nirankari Bhawans and Samagams.

The Chief Minister apprised Shah about the recent efforts by Pakistan’s ISI and the country’s establishment to push large quantities of weapons, hand-grenades, RDX explosives, detonators, timer devices, sophisticated laboratory-made tiffin bombs into Punjab for carrying out terrorist acts. “With the Punjab Assembly elections scheduled for February-March 2022, many militant and radical operatives are being pressurised by the ISI to carry out terrorist actions. These are very serious and worrisome developments having huge security implications for the border state and its people,” he warned.

He reminded the Home Minister about the earlier targeted killings masterminded by the ISI, including that of RSS/Shiv Sena/Dera leaders and RSS Shakhas, in 2016, ahead of the last Assembly polls. Also, the Maur bomb blast on January 31, 2017, was carried out just three days before the polling day on February 4, 2017, he noted.

The Chief Minister told Shah that between July 4 and August 8, 2021, foreign-based pro-Khalistani entities, working in close collaboration with the ISI, had managed to induct over 30 pistols, one MP4 Rifle, one AK-47 Rifle, around 35 hand-grenades, sophisticated laboratory-made tiffin bombs, over 6 Kg RDX and assorted hardware for fabrication of IEDs (9 detonators, 1 multiple timer device and fuse-wire). He further informed Shah that in the last 35 days, more than 17 deliveries of weapons, hand-grenades, explosives and assorted IED fabrication hardware had come to the notice of the Punjab Police and the central agencies, which meant that consignments of weapons/hand-grenades/IEDs were delivered to Punjab based terror operatives on every 2nd day in July with the trend continuing in August.

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