NADABET BOP (Gujarat): In a noble gesture, diamond merchants of Surat and Mumbai donated 10,000 goggles, RO water purifiers besides ECG machines and a host of other items for use by BSF jawans guarding the Indo-Pak border in scorching heat.
The items were handed over to the BSF at a special function organised here, which was also attended by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. The initiative followed a request by Minister of State for Home Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary who himself is associated with diamond trade.
Appreciating the gesture, the Home Minister said diamond merchants across the country should join hands with the security agencies for the welfare of jawans who lay down their lives protecting the nation. Describing Border Security Force as the "first wall of defence," Singh said government would do its best for their all-round welfare.
Chaudhary, an MP from Banaskantha in Gujarat, which touches the International Border, told the Surat-based 'SRK Knowledge Foundation', that led the initiative, to come forward with more such welfare schemes.
Among the articles which were donated include 10,000 sunglasses worth Rs 650 each, ECG and X-Ray machines, medical laboratory equipment, an ambulance, 10 oxygen concentrators, 10 RO water plants of 500 litre capacity each and 7,000 mattresses.
Besides, it was decided to upgrade three BSF hospitals with contribution from the diamond traders at a cost of Rs 15 lakh each and develop three shooting ranges at an investment of Rs 25 lakh. Residential units will also be constructed for children of martyrs studying in Gandhinagar.
'SRK Knowledge Foundation' chairperson Govind Bhai Dholakia said that he was immensely happy to help the BSF jawans, who guard the frontiers in challenging conditions. India shares 3,323 km border (including Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir) with Pakistan, of which 826 km falls in Gujarat.
The initiative is currently being undertaken for the BSF jawans posted in Gujarat and will be gradually expanded toother borders, Chaudhary said.