CHANDIGARH: Punjab assembly on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution rejecting the Centre’s notification on increasing the jurisdiction of the Border Security Force (BSF) from 15 km to 50 km.
The resolution was moved by Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, who also holds the Home portfolio. The resolutiom said that the decision of extending the jurisdiction of BSF from 15 to 50 km is an expression of distrust towards the state and the people of Punjab.
However, minutes later , former chief minister of Punjab, Capt Amarinder Singh , who was asked to step down two months ago by his party , rejected the Punjab government’s resolution.
“Extending operational jurisdiction of BSF neither infringes upon federal authority of Punjab, nor questions competence of state police in maintaining law and order, as some vested political interests are trying to make out. It concerns national security; must not be politicized.” Capt Amarinder Singh tweeted.
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Amarinder in his tweet made it clear that there is a huge difference between the law and order and national security. “Unfortunately people playing up the issue are unable to make out the difference between law and order and national security. BSF like Punjab Police is our own force and not an external or foreign army coming to occupy our land,” he wrote on his Twitter.
Extending operational jurisdiction of BSF neither infringes upon federal authority of Punjab, nor questions competence of state police in maintaining law n order, as some vested political interests are trying to make out. It concerns national security; must not be politicised.
— Capt.Amarinder Singh (@capt_amarinder) November 11, 2021
He said it was sad that the government was trying to politicise an issue, which concerns national security and concerns all border states including Punjab. He said it is not only Punjab, but the states like Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan, Gujarat, West Bengal and others where the BSF jurisdiction is 50 km inside the international border. Moreover, he added, with Pakistan using sophisticated technology and highly improvised drones with a range of as much as 30kms, it is important that the BSF gets more operational jurisdiction.
Notably, during the Punjab session the deputy chief minister, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, who also holds the home portfolio, on Thursday moved a resolution, demanding the withdrawal of the Union home ministry’s directions to increase the jurisdiction of Punjab’s border from 15 km to 50 km in the state.
Randhawa termed the Centre’s move an attack on the federal structure and said that Congress government led by Charanjit Singh Channi will challenge the notification in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
Hours later, Aam Aadmi Party legislative leader of assembly and Sunam MLA Aman Arora too joined in the issue, saying both CM Charanjit Channi and Randhawa were lying, not serious in rejecting the resolution. He said that Channi must not just be a paper tiger and disallow Centre to enforce BSF to implement this rule as it would mean Punjab Police has no role in the state to maintain law and order.
AAP earlier also staged a walkout from the special session, accusing Channi of playing an important role in the “deal” with Union Home minister Amit Shah.
“Channi met Shah in Delhi and then himself wrote on his Twitter, saying that the Punjab border as unsafe and that drugs and weapons were coming from across the border. This clearly shows he like Amarinder is hands in gloves with the BJP,” said Arora.
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