BY RAJNISH SINGH
New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) The Indo-Tibetan Border Police has been planning to conduct a detailed survey of north-western border to increase the number of its border outposts (BoPs) in the Himalayan range aimed at increasing its accessibility closer to India-China border.
The survey would be conducted starting from Karakoram up to the Myanmar border to establish more BoPs. Karakoram is a large mountain range spanning the borders of Pakistan, India, and China, with the northwest extremity of the range extending to Afghanistan and Tajikistan.
Mandated to guard 3,488-km India’s border with China, ITBP has constructed 180 BoPs, 25 in the last five years.
ITBP Director General Surjeet Singh Deswal on Wednesday said the accessibility of the border up to “zero line” has been increased with the construction of the 25 new BoPs.
“We will conduct a survey of the whole border from north-west starting point from Karakoram up to the Myanmar border in Arunachal Pradesh to see if more BoPs can be created,” Deswal said at ITBP’s annual conference.
“Our assessment is to reach closer to the border. If we feel, more new BoPs can be set up.”
The ITBP Director General said patrolling has also been increased with the setting up of new BoPs.
The officer also said that a composite or climate-controlled BoP at Lukung near Pangong Tso in Ladakh is also being constructed for soldiers who guard the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China. The source of energy at these BoPs will be clean fuel or solar energy, not diesel or kerosene.
The DG said, however, the BoP work has been delayed by the construction agency.
The temperature inside the composite outposts will be around normal room temperature at 25-30 degrees Celsius even when the temperature outside would be minus 40 degrees Celsius, said another officer, adding the cost of one such BoP would be around Rs 20 crore.
These high-altitude BoPs will also have facilities to store water.
The BOPs will have room for about 100 personnel and will include a mess, toilets, a medical room, and an office of senior officers at 15,000 feet height.
A BoP will have insulated walls, roof and windows, protecting it from severe weather conditions especially the sub zero temperatures, solar power electricity and heating system, 24-hour water and fresh air supply with the help of GeoThermal ducts with no dependence on fossil fuel.
(Rajnish Singh can be contacted at [email protected])