Chhattisgarh: Street dogs detecting explosives in Naxal hotbed

The Chhattisgarh Police is planning to train a new batch of street dogs for anti-Naxal operations.

Updated: Apr 29, 2011, 15:42 PM IST

Kanker (Chhattisgarh): The Chhattisgarh
Police is planning to train a new batch of street dogs for
anti-Naxal operations after the canines delivered good results
by detecting over 350 IEDs and landmines in the past two

The mongrels, being trained at the Counter Terrorism
and Jungle Warfare (CTJW) College here, have helped save the
lives of a number of policemen by detecting the explosives.
The street dogs, being trained for anti-Naxal police
duties, have better utility value when compared to high-breed
canines like Labrador and German Shepherd.

"The local street dogs have an edge over the pedigreed
dogs as they do not get tired in the hot weather and rough
terrain in the dense jungles and Naxal hotbeds of the state.
They have a better adaptability to the environment and have
produced excellent results in police and security duties,"
CTJW Director Brigadier (retd) B K Ponwar said.

Presently, we are training four such dogs Teja, Sally,
Heena and Rolly after we found that our experiment with such
dogs bore excellent results. More such dogs who have good
built and display positive orientation for police duties will
be trained, Ponwar, who has been designated as Inspector
General (IG) of Chhattisgarh police for running the CTJW,
Ponwar helped set up the unique college here six years
ago after he was asked by the state government to train its
policemen for special operations in view of the naxal problem.

Ponwar said while the college is also training
pedigreed dogs, the results with street dogs has been
excellent and more than what was expected of them.

"They require less pampering, less investment of
resources and less care. They have a high stamina when it
comes to working in these areas. They are good learners,"
Ponwar said.

Central security forces like CRPF, ITBP and BSF
deployed for anti-Naxal operations in the state are also being
assisted by a specialised breed of imported Belgian shepherd
dogs for `infantry patrols` and to provide pre-ambush warning
to the troops.

"A police dog is an essential component of any
security force squad. This part was missing in anti-Naxal
operations. As the local dogs are best suited for this
terrain, they are now being deployed to assist the forces.

They can avert major casualties and ambushes by giving early
signals to their masters," a senior police officer said on the
condition of anonymity.

The high-breed dogs have been used with success by
NATO troops in Afghanistan and Israeli troops in Gaza.