The announcement came after at the end of a six-day border conference
Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) will be aided by Border Security Force (BSF) and Myanmar's Border Guard Police (BGP) to keep the borders safe during the upcoming 11th national election.
BGB Director General (DG) Maj Gen Shafeenul Islam announced this at a press conference held at the BGB headquarters in Pilkhana, Dhaka, around 12pm on Monday.
The press conference was called to inform the progress of the six-day-long India-Bangladesh border conference meeting at the DG level held from September 3-8 in New Delhi.
The BGB DG further said: "During the election time, our manpower decreases as we have to help the law enforcement agencies to uphold law and order within the country. Because of this, we have asked for the cooperation of BSF and Myanmar’s BGP to maintain security in the border areas."
Shafeenul said BGB will abide by the election-specific instructions provided by the government.
When asked about the steps BGB has taken to control illegal drug trading – especially yaba – through border areas, the DG said: "Most of the time, it becomes difficult to trace the drug, as they are hidden in different body parts that are hard to search. Even then, we have managed to curb yaba trading to a great extent."
He said the most important thing to control yaba trade is to create public awareness of how harmful the drug can be. "BGB has set up 23,520 awareness programs along the border areas with that objective in mind," he said.
Although regulated throughout the year, BGB has already started taking extra preparations to stop illegal arms and ammunition trading on the Bangladesh-India and Bangladesh-Myanmar border.
"We have increased manpower, reinforced patrolling, built coordination with BSF and BGP, in the risk-prone areas," Shafeenul said. "We want to ensure that no illegal weapon trading takes place during the upcoming election."
BGB DG said that two border guard forces are trying to bring down the killings at the border areas, adding that, 71 people were killed at the border area in 2001, 60 in 2010, 45 in 2015, 31 in 2016, 22 in 2017 and one killed on September 10, 2018. In that case, we hope can bring down border-killings to zero.
When asked about the BBC Bangla report regarding a recent BGB-BSF meeting with the agenda of higher education for their children, and tours in India for their wives, BGB DG Shafeenul trashed the report and said it was “totally baseless”.
Other than drug, arms and ammunition trading, issues such as the detention and killing of Bangladeshi nationals by the BSF, increasing the size of the "Crime Free Zone", and the protection of river banks in border areas were also discussed.