Randeep Surjewala, a Congress leader today criticised the Centre for its "unilateral" decision to expand Border Security Force (BSF) jurisdiction in Punjab, claiming it was intended to divert attention from the heroin smuggling through Adani's Mundra Port in Gujarat this year.

Mr Surjewala linked a 25,000 kg consignment that reportedly went through Mundra Port in June and a 3,000 kg (valued at 20,000 crores) cargo seized at the same port in September to the decision on BSF jurisdiction, inspired by Home Minister Amit Shah's 'chronology samjhiye' statement.

"The Chronology - 25,000 kg of heroin came through Adani Port, Gujarat on 9/6/2021...3,000 kg of heroin caught at Adani Port, Gujarat on 13/9/2021...BSF jurisdiction unilaterally increased from 15 km to 50 km in Punjab,” Congress leader said on Twitter.

“Federalism Dead, Conspiracy Clear," he added.

The remark follows a Home Ministry order issued last night which stated that BSF jurisdiction in three states - Punjab, Bengal, and Assam - will now extend to all areas within 50 kilometres of each state's international boundary.

Prior to this, the BSF had authority up to 15 kilometres from the border. The new directive allows the BSF to search and arrest people across a broader space.

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This might create an unstable situation in Punjab, where the BSF and police are likely to clash over jurisdiction in a state where the BJP and Congress will face off in the election next year.

In upcoming assembly polls, states will elect a new government, with the Congress (in power in Punjab) and the BJP (in power in Gujarat) seeking re-election in their respective states and a strong showing in the other.

Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Channi has called this "a direct attack on federalism."

Mr Surjewala's tweet is also an attempt to remind Gujarat voters of the drug movement in their state, as well as to emphasise the Congress' point that no action has been taken despite the presence of BJP leaders in the country's two most powerful positions, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

Authorities recovered 3,000 kg of heroin from Mundra Port in September. The shipment had arrived via Iran from Afghanistan, one of the world's top illegal opium producers.

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