The Border Security Force (BSF) is all set to get more teeth to man the 198 km India-Pakistan international border using a newly developed technology that can detect intrusions and relay information immediately to the nearest post for action.
Developed by Delhi-based defence IoT firm, CRON Systems, the made-in-India technology is called Kavach (KVx) series laser walls and is a notch higher than the existing laser walls.
“Laser walls, because of their beams, were visible. And the terrain and alignments (in the region) were a problem. We were looking for a wall that is invisible on the ground, cannot be felt, and is more effective,” said Rakesh Sharma, former inspector general of BSF’s Jammu Frontier.
“CRON Systems have come up with this intrusion detection system based on infrared array, which is invisible. It is more advanced than laser walls,” he said, adding that it can be used along the Jammu border with Pakistan which has 13 rivers and rivulets, besides unfenced marshy lands.
Kavach walls can also work in transparent water and glass, he said.
India shares nearly 3,000 km border with Pakistan, of which 198 km international border and 740 km Line of Control (LoC) falls in Jammu and Kashmir. Infiltration of Pakistani militants through this part has been a major issue for the BSF which guards the border.
Besides electric fencing, the force has tried using various technologies, including laser, to detect and prevent intrusions. Kavach walls are the latest in the series of developments undertaken by the force.
CRON Systems CEO Tushar Chhabra said BSF men use miCRON, a command and control platform, to manage the devices and monitor the border from their outpost.
The walls can immediately alert the nearest outpost about intrusion attempts and triggers action from a quick response tool (QRT), which is an internet of things (IoT) device.
“It monitors large swathes of any territory from a single interface. All devices on miCRON use CRONet, an encrypted network, to communicate with each other,” he said.
The all-terrain weather-proof system uses complex, encrypted technologies to monitor and communicate with the jawans. It massively improves troops’ visibility, patrolling and response capabilities, Sharma said.
On the installation, Chhabra said five KVx-series walls, connected with infrared (technology), can secure a kilometre-long stretch.
“It takes less than a couple of hours for a 1 km stretch to install the technology. All we need is electricity to run the technology. And in case power is snapped, it can be run on UPS for 8–12 hours,” he said.
BSF is currently pilot testing the Kavach walls along the Samba sector border on the Jammu Frontier, through which three heavily armed Pakistani militants had entered Indian territory on November 29 last year, and were shot dead by the BSF.
Sharma said the best brains from IITs were roped in. An Israeli air force veteran, Tommy Katzenellenbogen was also the part of the project.
“CRON Systems has developed Kavach laser walls after working with our jawans on the ground and thoroughly understanding their needs and challenges. We are confident that it will be a force multiplier for us,” he said.