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BSF alerts positions along Pakistan bordering Punjab

PTI 02 Nov 2014, 23:12:52 PM IST

New Delhi:  BSF was tonight put on high alert along the Indo-Pak border in Punjab after a suicide bomber blew himself up in a crowd across Amritsar's Wagah sector in Pakistan leaving at least 52 people dead.  

BSF chief D K Pathak, who spoke to his officers in the Ferozpur division under which the Wagah sector falls to assess the situation, said BSF had received some inputs about a fortnight ago that terror groups may try to carry out a possible strike during the beating retreat ceremony, hosted by both the border guarding forces every evening before sunset.  

There will be no beating retreat ceremony at Wagah border for three days from tomorrow at the request of Pakistan, he said.

“We were already alert in this area as we have received some inputs some time back that this area could be targeted.  

Now that the blast has occurred, we have alerted our formations along this frontier,” Pathak told PTI.  He said his formations have told him that the blast occurred about 500 metres from the Wagah border retreat ceremony area this evening.

“The Pakistani Rangers initially told us that there was a cylinder blast in a tea stall but now it has emerged to be a Fidayeen attack. We are not very sure about the exact reasons,” he said.

The BSF chief said his officers in Punjab had already undertaken “coordination” meetings with all intelligence, security and state government authorities in the light of the inputs they had received.

The forces' Punjab Frontier Inspector General Ashok Kumar said the “blast was reported around 1810 hours and that all Indian locations were safe.”

The BSF has asked its border posts and field commanders to mount additional vigil.

At least 54 people, including children, women and security personnel, were killed and about 200 others injured in the powerful suicide blast, minutes after the popular flag-lowering ceremony at the main Indo-Pak land border crossing.