'IG level officers in Naxal-hit areas can seek BSF choppers'

"The powers for requisition of BSF helicopters have been delegated to the IG (Ops) CRPF of the state concerned," Home Minister P Chidambaram today said at his monthly press briefings.

The move is set to bolster the campaign against the Maoists as, till now, the state police could ask for the helicopters after consultation with CRPF Special Director General and commander of anti-Naxal operations .

The recently appointed CRPF Inspector General level officers are deployed in Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa and West Bengal, where a new Unified Command will also be set up.
The Union Home Ministry meanwhile has sanctioned Rs 45 lakh for procurement of 30 satellite phones for the Border Security Force.

Satellite phones are crucial for security forces as at times they operate in thick jungles and forward areas where normal mobile connections don't work.
The Ministry has also sanctioned Rs 25 crore for the purchase of 10 All-Purpose/Special Purpose Vehicles.

Procurement of 216 vehicles for CRPF at a cost of Rs 16.77 crore and 224 vehicles for Special Action Force at a cost of Rs 18.08 crore has also been sanctioned.

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