New Delhi: The Army will now train CRPF
personnel to tackle the deadly Improvised Explosive Devices
(IEDs) which have claimed lives of more than 100 troops during
CRPF Director General K Vijay Kumar recently met Army
Chief General V K Singh on sharing the expertise of College of
Military Training (CME) in Pune to train his men in
identifying, detecting and defusing IEDs, which have been
found hidden at the depth of more than 15-feet in many cases
in states like Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand.
Various IED tracing devices, `dip sticks` used to
detect hidden explosives and sniffer dogs have failed to
be foolproof and a number of patrol parties, both on foot and
in vehicles, have fallen prey to these deadly explosive
devices which are sometimes as heavy as 50 kg.
The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), which is the
lead force for anti-naxal operations in the country, has
deployed more than 60 battalions (about 60,000 personnel) in
various states and it has lost 105 personnel in the last five
years due to IED explosions only.
"The IEDs have been a major cause of death of
personnel belonging to CRPF and other forces operating in the
Naxal affected areas. In order to obtain sound expertise to
tackle the challenge effectively, the help of the army school
is being taken," a senior CRPF officer said.
In view of the crucial nature of the job, CME has
begun training CRPF officers and men at the Group Centre of
the paramilitary force in Pune while the CRPF is looking for
land in the city to establish an exclusive centre for training
in handling IEDs.
The CRPF has recovered 1,547 sets of IEDs during
2006-11 and the numbers have been increasing over the years,
according to official data.
According to the ambitious plan to deal with the
challenge, army trainers have schooled a few officers and
jawans who are operating in Naxal-hit areas and they would
subsequently create a pool of experts in prevention,
detection, neutralisation, destruction and disposal of IEDs.
An IED bomb data centre, which will act as a
repository of such explosive devices, will also be
A few army officials will also be sent on deputation
to the CRPF to put the exclusive first-ever school in place
for the country`s largest paramilitary force with almost
three lakh personnel under its command.
According to the CRPF officer, the training of IED
detection and neutralisation will also be imparted to
personnel belonging to central forces deployed in Jammu and
Kashmir and the Northeast, at a later stage.
An IED is a device placed or fabricated in an
improvised manner incorporating destructive, lethal and
incendiary chemicals and is designed to incapacitate or kill
the targets by a distant source of ignition.