Amid the ongoing tension along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the Cabinet on Wednesday approved the induction of seven additional battalions of Indo-Tibetan Border Police( ITBP ), primarily meant to guard the India-China border, and a sector headquarters (SHQ) to supervise them. The additional battalions will be raised to man 47 new Border Out Posts (BOPs) and 12 staging camps, further strengthening the security grip along the LAC.
A total of 9,400 troops will be inducted into the ITBP for the additional seven battalions and the sector headquarter, according to people familiar with the matter. The additional battalions and the SHQ will help fill gaps on border posts. The establishment of these battalions and sector headquarters is expected to be completed by 2025-26.
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An estimated ₹1,800 crore will be spent for the construction of office and residential buildings, land acquisition, and purchase of arms and ammunition. Around ₹963 crore will be spent per year on salaries, ration of the personnel and other recurring expenditure. The proposal was cleared after the meeting of the cabinet that was chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The about 90,000 personnel-strong ITBP was raised in the aftermath of the 1962 Chinese aggression and it is tasked to guard the 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) on India’s eastern flank.
In December, Indian and Chinese troops had minor border scuffles in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh, also claimed by Beijing. The clashes were the first since troops were involved in hand-to-hand combat in the Galwan valley of Ladakh. That incident led to the death of 20 Indian soldiers and four Chinese troops.
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