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Himachal governor urges defence minister to strengthen network in border areas

He has requested the minister to install and operationalise dependable and robust telecommunication network in border villages of the state and to make adequate arrangements to track movement of drones from the Chinese side amid present conflict at the Indo-China border.
By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, Shimla, Shimla
UPDATED ON JUL 28, 2020 08:14 PM IST

Himachal Pradesh governor Bandaru Dattatraya raised various issues with Union defence minister Rajnath Singh regarding Indo-China border in Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti districts and urged him to strengthen network system in these areas.

In a letter, the governor requested the defence minister to look into the matter personally and issue necessary directions to all concerned authorities for securing the Indo-China border in the state.

He has requested the minister to install and operationalise dependable and robust telecommunication network in border villages of the state and to make adequate arrangements to track movement of drones from the Chinese side amid present conflict at the Indo-China border.

The governor said air defence assets need to be positioned at appropriate locations to prevent violation of Indian air space. “About 240km of Indo-China border falls in two districts of Himachal Pradesh—Kinnaur (36 villages) and Lahaul & Spiti (12 villages). In view of the prevailing situation along Indo-China border a keen observation is being kept on the border movements,” he said.

The governor assured the defence minister that Himachal Pradesh Police is on high alert and the superintendents of police of these two districts have visited villages located near the border and interacted with people to build their confidence. He said the director general of police deputed five commandants of the HP Reserve Battalions from June 26 to visit all 48 villages in these districts. They visited the border villages in both the districts and have submitted their reports.

Dattatraya observed that there is an urgent need of an airstrip in the Spiti area of Lahaul and Spiti district for prompt deployment of forces to forward areas in case of need. “This airstrip will act as advanced landing ground. Helipads in forward areas should also be developed,” he said.

He also recommended the presence of Central Intelligence Agencies, Indian Army and increase in the strength of ITBP to bolster public morale. Besides, basic Chinese and Tibetan language training should be given to ITBP and state intelligence agencies.

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