The Assam government has decided to raise a crack Rhino Protection squad to combat rampant poaching of the pachyderms in the state. The new force will be armed with the latest INSAS and ghatak rifles so as to match the firepower of organized poachers who are part of inter-state and international poaching syndicates.

Addressing the media chairman of the state level police recruitment board said 90-personnel will be recruited for this squad, 9 of whom are women. Besides the government has also decided to recruit 525 new forest guards for which they have received a whopping 13.88 lakh applications.

This will be in addition to the 1386 personnel already recruited from Dhubri, Barpeta and Nagaon. It was also informed that 2 per cent of the vacant posts will be reserved for sports persons, special officers, home-guards, and former insurgents who joined the mainstream.

The recruitment board is all set to adopt a separate policy of recruitment of female candidates as most of them did not pass the physical test. Guidelines of the new recruitment policy for women will be rolled out soon.

Meanwhile, in another significant move, the chairman of the state police recruitment board informed that in order to curb insurgency in Assam, 10 per cent of the recruitment in police force will be done from insurgency prone areas. As many as 80 police stations in the state have been identified to be under militancy prone areas.

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