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Updated January 3rd, 2024 at 15:18 IST

India to deploy anti-drone system along Western border to counter smuggling threats

India have readied indigenous anti-drone technology for its western border to combat smuggling from Pakistan, utilising UAVs, arms, and narcotics.

Digital Desk
India to deploy a new homegrown Anti-Drone system within 6 months to address smuggling threats along IB and LOC
India to deploy a new homegrown Anti-Drone system within 6 months to address smuggling threats along IB and LOC | Image:DRDO / BSF Punjab
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New Delhi: An anti-drone system, developed domestically, is set to be installed along India's western border in the next six months, as per media reports. The primary objective, based on available information, is to thwart the use of drones by groups in Pakistan for smuggling arms and drugs into India, particularly Punjab.

Government officials have indicated that trials for three distinct anti-drone technologies are presently underway. The ultimate system chosen for deployment may stem from one of these options or potentially comprise a combination of two or more technologies.

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Challenges BSF faces in countering Pakistan's quadcopter threat

For years, security agencies have grappled with the infiltration of drones smuggling arms, drugs, and other illicit goods from Pakistan into regions such as Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir. Over the past year alone, the Border Security Force (BSF) seized over 100 Chinese drones and noted a substantial surge in drone sightings, numbering between 300 to 400.

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The heightened surveillance efforts of the BSF, employing diverse anti-drone systems, have made it increasingly challenging for smugglers to evade detection. Consequently, smugglers have been compelled to alter their tactics, such as resorting to the Rajasthan route when surveillance intensifies in Punjab. However, the BSF's advancements in surveillance technology have effectively countered these strategic adjustments.

Smugglers often employ smaller drones with lighter payloads, predominantly of Chinese origin, owing to their availability and lower cost. Authorities have underscored the urgency of deploying anti-drone technology to confront the escalating threat posed by drones. Counter-unmanned aircraft systems (C-UAS) can neutralise drones by either blocking communication or physically intercepting and disabling the drones.

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Western border scene different from Arabian sea situation

Recent drone attacks akin to those witnessed in the Israel-Hamas conflict have occurred in the Red Sea, orchestrated by Iran-backed Houthi rebels. Merely a week ago, a merchant ship in the Arabian Sea sustained damage from a drone attack, prompting India's response and the deployment of its warships in the region. Nonetheless, the threats that India aims to address through the deployment of these C-UAS systems differ from those posed by more lethal MALE or Hale drones, or even Kamikaze drones.

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However,this specific system, that India intents to deploy, is designed to assist India in countering the smaller Chinese Quadcopters that Pakistan has consistently utilised over the years for smuggling contraband.

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Published January 3rd, 2024 at 15:18 IST

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