The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sanctioned around Rs 500 crore for modernisation of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) for the next two years in the wake of increased participation of the force in anti-terror operations in Kashmir. Over 50 per cent of the total Rs 1,054 crore sanctioned for Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) will go to CRPF, Home Ministry officials said.The rest of the amount will be shared by other forces like Border Security Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Central Industrial Security Force, Assam Rifles, and National Security Guards.The money will be spent on buying modern bulletproof jackets, bulletproof helmets, body armours, weapons, and high-tech gadgets for surveillance among other crucial items to equip the force.”Since the CRPF has been serving constantly in conflict zones, there is a need to upgrade the force. A huge share of the fund has been allocated to it,” a Home Ministry official said.The CRPF along with the Army and state police has been aggressively carrying out operation in Kashmir killing over 200 terrorists this year. It is also the lead force when it comes to combating MaoistsUpgrading of crucial weapons and equipment is part of MHA’s larger plan to give a push to the modernisation drive for police forces. MHA has already laid out a blueprint for Rs 25,000 crore modernisation schemes.CRPF and has a heavy deployment in the red zone. With strength of nearly 3 lakh it has the highest presence in Maoist hit states with nearly 85,000- 90,000 personnel serving in the red zone alone.There has been a five time increase in the amount sanctioned for CAPFs as part of a two year modernisation plan with the Home Ministry approved Rs 1054 from the corpus of Rs. 25,000 crore for the years 2018 and 2019.This a huge jump from the Rs. 200 crore amount spent by the forces in the last three years, sources said.While CRPF officials are happy about the amount being sanctioned they are also sceptical the amount being released. “In the past the amount actually released was much less than what was sanctioned,” said a CRPF official.
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