LAST UPDATED: Feb. 22, 2021, 10:20 a.m.
New Delhi: The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) will continue to patrol areas in Ladakh in the tense areas along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between India and China after the withdrawal of the Indian Army and People’s Liberation Army (PLA) from the north and south banks of the Pangong Tso lake.
The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) will not patrol areas where there is still tension between the two countries or other points such as Depsang, Gogra, Hot Springs and Kongka La until the terms of re-patrol or old patrolling conditions ae established.
“We will continue to patrol our perception of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in areas that are not stress areas. These include some pastures, interior zones and patrolling points in Uttarakhand,” an Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) official said.
Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh told Parliament last Thursday that decisions on other tense points would be taken during discussions on both the north and south 48 hours after the retreat of the two countries’ forces from the Pangong Lake region.
Rajnath Singh had said that under the agreement, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has transferred its army to the North Bank to the east of Finger 8 and the Indian Army to its base.
“Ladakh will maintain the status quo for now in its border outposts (BOPs) in the region, strengthened by 60 additional companies (about 6,000 personnel) last June-July. At least 25 to 30 additional personnel were deployed in most of the ITBP BoPs in eastern Ladakh after the Galwan Valley conflict. Usually, 100 to 110 personnel are deployed in each border post,” another Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) official said.
Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) officials also confirmed that the development of infrastructure, construction of roads, construction of jawans’ barracks/checkpoints and 47 new BoPs approved by the government on the 3,488 km border with China will continue. In fact, ITBP’s first “climate-controlled” BOP in the Lukung Valley along the strategic Pangong Tso Lake, costing around 17 crore, is currently under trial. The state-of-the-art BOP is expected to be officially operational by April or May this year.