Centre asks states to strengthen policing in coastal region

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New Delhi, Dec 13 (UNI) The Centre today asked states to complete construction of police stations, checkposts and outposts in coastal areas to strengthen infrastructure for patrolling and surveillance and to ensure proper vigilance to prevent smuggling of arms, ammunition, narcotics and infiltration from the territorial waters of the country.

The nine coastal states and four coastal union territories have been urged to complete the construction work of 73 police stations, 97 checkposts, 58 outposts and 30 operational barracks under the Coastal Security Scheme which help them in policing the territorial waters upto 12 nautical miles.

An outlay of Rs 400 crore as non-recurring expenditure and Rs 151 crore recurring expenditure over a period of five years have been approved for the scheme.

Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta chaired a review meeting of the scheme in which coastal states and union territories were asked to take urgent steps to protect the long coastal line of the country to prevent smuggling of arms, narcotics and infiltration of extremists.

The meeting was attended by representatives of all the nine coastal states and four union territories to assess the progress of the scheme, approved in January 2005. They agreed to provide regular feedback on the progress of implementation in terms of development of physical infrastructure, equipping of coastal police stations, sanctioning of the recruitment of required police and technical personnel.

The states also assured to provide feedback regarding the impact of operationalising the scheme in terms of checking of illegal activities, number of arrests, prosecution of criminal elements and seizure of contraband.

The scheme, approved in January 2005, had to be implemented over a five-year period commencing 2005-06. It was based on the recommendations of the Group of Ministers on ''Reviewing the National Security System'' and was formulated after consultations with all agencies concerned, including State Governments.

UNI

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