Sashastra Seema Bal to get intelligence wing

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh will operationalise the SSB’s first ever intelligence wing on 20 September 2017. The paramilitary force guards India’s borders with Bhutan and Nepal, which are often used by criminals and Kashmiri militants returning from Pakistan.

The intelligence wing have 650 field and staff agents to gather actionable information. Due to the visa-free regime India has with Nepal and Bhutan, there is a trans-border movement of criminals and anti-national elements which pose a major challenge. The SSB has been mandated to guard the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan borders where there are no restrictions on the movement of people on either side.

As many as 230 former Kashmiri militants, based in Pakistan and Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir, have returned home through the Indo-Nepal border since 2010. Also, their spouses and 88 children have come along with them. The former militants, their spouses and children did not have travel documents while entering India. Security agencies detained them upon ascertaining their real identities, another official said requesting anonymity.

The SSB has also been declared as the lead intelligence agency for both the borders. Thus, the central government felt that a well-knit intelligence network of the highest capability that can function and deliver would be the prime requirement for comprehensive border management.

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