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High alert sounded in Sikkim, north West Bengal


Siliguri : A high alert was sounded in Sikkim and northern West Bengal, and the police intensified patrolling and launched intense checks following the serial bomb blasts in various parts of Assam, including nearby Kokrajhar Thursday.

Sikkim Director General of Police Akshay Kumar Sachdeva told IANS by telephone from Gangtok that security was beefed up in all districts of the state that has a common border with West Bengal.

“All the districts are on high alert. Orders have been issued to all the district superintendents of police to conduct special checking at the chekcposts between the two states at Rongpo and Mally,” he said.

Inspector General of police (North Bengal) Kundan Lal Tamta told IANS that sniffer dogs were pressed into service and there was increased police patrolling in the north Bengal districts.

With northern West Bengal sharing an extensive border with Assam, steps were also taken to pre-empt any possibility of militants sneaking into West Bengal, Tamta said.

The Border Security Force (BSF), which patrols the India-Bangladesh border, and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) that guards the country’s borders with Nepal and Bhutan, have also been asked to increase vigil.

“The militants have chosen crowded places to strike. So, we are paying special attention to crowded areas like market places,” Tamta said.

The police were also coordinating with the army and intelligence agencies.

Special Inspector General of Police (Jalpaiguri Range) Zulfiqar Hassan said the West Bengal police are in constant touch with their counterparts in Assam to track movements of the ultras.