GUWAHATI, Dec 7 � The Government of India has finally realized the urgent need of giving due importance to securing the international border with China and steps including increasing the strength of the Army, building up of infrastructure etc have started. However, in regard to building up of infrastructure along the international border, China is still way ahead of India.
Highly placed official sources in New Delhi told The Assam Tribune that the Government of India is now concerned about the need for securing the borders with China and asserted that India is now much better prepared to face any eventuality.
Giving some examples of the build up along the border, sources said that two new divisions of the Indian Army have been created, one each under 3 Corps and 4 Corps, but the places where the headquarters of the new divisions would be located are yet to be finalized. Sources revealed that in addition to 3 and 4 Corps of the Army, the 33 corps is also engaged in guarding the frontier with China in the eastern sector.
But the problem is that substantial number of personnel of the Army, particularly those under the 3 and 4 Corps is engaged in counter-insurgency operations. Sources said that if the State Governments can manage the situation with the help of the Central paramilitary forces, then the Army personnel can concentrate more on its traditional task of guarding the country's interests against possible external aggression.
Sources revealed that in the last couple of years, the Government of India has pumped in substantial amount of funds for development of infrastructure along the international border with China to facilitate movement of troops in case of any eventuality, while, the completion of the Bogibeel Bridge over the river Brahmaputra would also be of great help to the Army. Sources pointed out that the Army is also keen on improvement of the inland waterways as it can be used for transportation of men and material.
Official sources disclosed that permanent shelters for the Army personnel are being constructed in difficult terrain, while one battalion of the Arunachal Scouts has been raised and the men of the new force would join their duties soon. The members of the Arunachal Scouts have better knowledge of the terrain and they would be of great help to the Army as was the case with the personnel of the Ladakh Scouts, sources said. The members of the Arunachal Scouts will be working with the Army. The strength of the Border Roads Organization and ITBP has also been increased.
However, sources admitted that the pace of infrastructure development along the border is yet to match the pace of China. The Chinese have been developing infrastructure along the international border over the years and India started concentrating in this sector only recently. The main aim of the Chinese was to ensure assimilation of Tibet with the mainland with rapid pace of development and the same infrastructure can be used for movement of troops in case of any eventuality.
On the positive side, sources said that the relation between the army of both the countries have improved considerably and minor disputes are always settled in the flag meetings held at different levels.