The Uttarakhand government and Indo-Tibet Border Police (ITBP) have decided to improve critical infrastructure, promote tourism and civilian settlements in the border areas of the state keeping in mind national security. In a meeting with Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, ITBP Chief S S Deswal raised issues pertaining to reverse migration, road, mobile and power connectivity, approvals for acquiring land for ITBP infrastructures and promotion of tourism including water sports in remote areas in the backdrop of the recent border clashes with China following PLA’s incursions. Uttarakhand’s border with China extends to 350 km. The ITBP has its presence on 42 BoPs (border outposts) in Badahoti and Mana Pass.
People familiar with development said Rawat has committed to work in coordination with ITBP for realisation of the objectives. Officials in Uttarakhand CM’s office, who did not wish to be named, said Rawat announced ~10 crore under chief minister border areas development project and instructed officials to ensure that the state complemented the national developmental schemes for the region.
Several defence and strategic experts recently spoke about the need for increasing human settlements and tourism activities in border areas which could act as the second line of defence. The chief minister also instructed officials to urgently outline a project to provide power connection to ITBP posts in remote border areas in the state. He said the Central government will be requested to help set up mobile towers in these regions for uninterrupted communication. He also instructed the Dehradun district magistrate to make available 15 acres of land for the setting up of ITBP’s frontier headquarter, added officials.