New Delhi, Oct 24 (ANI): The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), the paramilitary security outfit deployed along Sino-Indian border celebrated its golden jubilee Raising Day here on Monday.
An impressive parade that was reviewed by Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram marked the historical event at New Delhi.
The ITBP was formed on October 24, 1962 for supplementing security along India's border with the Tibet Autonomous Region of China, right from the Karakoram Pass of upper Himalayas beyond Ladakh region of Kashmir to Jachep La in NEFA (North Eastern Frontier Agency, now renamed as Arunachal Pradesh).
After reviewing the parade, Chidambaram in his address lauded the valour of the ITBP security personnel for braving the nerve chilling weather, mercury going down the sub-zero mark, snowstorms, blizzards and avalanches including whiteouts, in the some of the most remote and isolated posts along the India-China border.
"No force serves in a more inhospitable terrain. Along the 3488 kilometres long India-China border, from Karakoram Pass to Jachep La (in Arunachal Pradesh), the jawans have braved extreme cold weather, snow, blizzards and avalanche at post located at heights ranging from 9000 feet to 18,600 feet," said Chidambaram.
"On behalf of the government and people of this country I salute your courage and determination in maintaining 24/7 vigil under daunting conditions," he added.
Chidambaram also disclosed about the governments plan to construct 27 new road links along the border and also increase the number of battalions to reduce the days of tenure at these remote border posts.
On this score, he claimed that after he took charge of the Home Ministry, the posting period in the remote posts had been reduced to four months from the previous six and the government is seriously pondering over further bringing it down to three months.
"In order to ease the hardship, we have ordered the construction of 27 border roads along the India-China border, which is now underway. When I took over I was told that an ITBP jawan spends a little over six months in one of the border outposts at heights ranging upto 18,000 feet. I instructed the ITBP that this must be progressively reduced," said Chidambaram.
"Today, it is about four months, but I wish to assure you that the goal is to bring down the average tenure of posting in one of these outposts to no more than three months. As we raise new battalions this will be possible," he added.
The ITBP personnel have also been deployed abroad in UN peacekeeping assignments in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Haiti and Sudan. (ANI)