The decision to set up the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) to protect the 1643 kilometers long unmanned India-Myanmar border hangs in the balance since the government is yet to determine the destiny of the Assam Rifles — the earliest paramilitary force of India.
The Assam Rifles recruits its soldiers but is officered and controlled by officers of the Indian Army.
Presently, the ITBP is under the operational control of the military but the administrative charge of the housing ministry. The double reporting control and command, however, will direct confusion sometimes.
Aside from the counter-insurgency function during calmness, Assam Rifles has an”operational function” through wars, the military has told the authorities. The Assam Rifles is tasked to take over the”defensive”, “holding part” of the military during warfare penalizing military formations to be transferred into various functions, the defence ministry has contended.
On the contrary, the housing ministry claims the India-Myanmar border has to secure”more inexpensively.” It’s an”open border” that allows free motion of local cultural groups of the states within 16km of both sides of the boundary.
The other 15 soldiers were hurt in the ambush.
A committee headed by the then leader of the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) RN Ravi had advocated that ITBP ought to be set up along the India-Myanmar boundary to boost vigil.
The military has mentioned Operation Sunrise through which components of the military and Assam Rifles and also Myanmar’s army completed coordinated operations against insurgent bands in their side of their boundary.
“The performance was possible due to collaboration between the two militaries and it’s improbable between police forces,” a senior military officer said describing the army’s standpoint.
Last, the military has also told the authorities the”Border-Out Post” (BoP) method of protecting boundaries isn’t acceptable for the India-Myanmar boundary. Instead, it stated that the present Business Working Article (CoP) system is significantly more efficient.
Border guarding forces such as ITBP and Border Security Force (BSF) setup BoP that’s manned by a few men as against Business Running Bases where 70-80 guys headed by an officer are liable for some part of the boundary.