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The China-India border clash in eastern Ladakh is expected to be resolved peacefully soon: ITBP India News chief

NEW DELHI: The India-China border standoff in eastern Ladakh is expected to be resolved peacefully “very soon,” ITBP chief SS Deswal said, adding that infrastructure along the Royal Line of Control ( LAC) is also increasing at a rapid rate.
Speaking to PTI during an extensive interview, the director general of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) said that his troops received special winter clothing and nutritious food as they cope with the severe cold in eastern Ladakh where the armies of India and China are locked in a tense standoff for more than six months.
When asked about the current military confrontation with China in eastern Ladakh, Deswal said that “the tensions in bilateral relations are already evident, but we are confident that they will be resolved peacefully very soon.”
Authorized sources said on Wednesday that India and China broadly agreed to a three-step process on troop withdrawal and arms withdrawal from all major sticking points with a time limit.
“The Indo-Tibetan border is the highest international border in the world. In all places it is about 10-11 thousand feet high. All our troops are deployed at that height. The oxygen is lower, the temperature in winters is very severe as it hits minus 40 degrees Celsius, “he said.
“All these difficulties make the very existence of human beings in that area very difficult, and then patrolling the border is equally difficult.”
The training and acclimatization of ITBP jaws is long and we instill all kinds of skills and boost immunity so they feel comfortable surviving in the harsh environment, he said.
Deswal said the force conducts special winter storage every winter and the logistics exercise has been improved this time.
“To protect our troops, we have provided special clothing for the cold. We have improved the content of the ration with foods rich in nutrients and calories to survive the cold. These are the working conditions on that border and, as it is a border not demarcated, a jawan to be always alert ”, he added.
Border protection is done through patrols and the ITBP conducts long patrols that can extend up to 30 days, said Deswal, who leads the 90,000-strong mountain warfare-trained force.
The ITBP chief also spoke about his recent tour of the Ladakh front where he spent 8 to 9 days and decorated 291 of his staff for showing gallantry during clashes and skirmishes with Chinese troops in May and June.
“The sincerity of our troops is very high despite the difficult working conditions. It is my responsibility to visit my jaws, especially in difficult times and in difficult conditions. I may not visit them when things are in good condition but it is my responsibility. reach them when they are in difficult conditions, “he said.
On strengthening border infrastructure, Deswal said work to erect new border posts and connect them with all-weather roads is progressing at a rapid pace. About 75 percent of ITBP border posts are now connected by roads, he added.
The ITBP, raised in the wake of the 1962 Chinese aggression, has around 180 posts along the 3,488 kilometers of LAC stretching from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh on the eastern flank of India.
“There is a government approach to creating good border infrastructure so that local people and forces can reach all remote parts of our own territory as close to the border as possible.”
“The pace of road construction is very fast now. In recent years, a lot of roads have been built. Initially, when the ITBP was lifted, the patrol group used to walk from Leh to Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) and used take more than a month to get there, “Deswal said. The distance between Leh and BOD is about 250 km.
As of that stage today, he said, nearly 75 percent of ITBP posts are now connected by roads across the border.
“With the same pace of road construction in the next 5-6 years, we expect all of our positions to be well connected by roads,” he added.
The Director General said that the ITBP is also improving its communications infrastructure to the current level of technology and when it comes to an improvement in armaments, the force is committed to the bilateral protocols in force on this front.
Deswal also said that the government has recently sanctioned 47 new border posts (BoPs) to ITBP throughout LAC and its effort is to establish several of them by 2021.
“Most of these new border posts will emerge in the state of Arunachal Pradesh. We have already identified the sites and the state government is willing to transfer the sites to us … it is at a very advanced stage and we are making progress every day,” he said.
When asked if the ITBP has sought new battalions and manpower to fill these positions, Deswal said that by the time we have the physical infrastructure on the ground, the force is expected to have more manpower.

Times of India

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