Govt not to hand over ITBP control to Army
New Delhi: Government will not hand over the command of ITBP to Army notwithstanding its demand for operational control of the paramilitary force which guards the Sino-Indian border.
In the wake of renewed tension along the border, the Army has pushed for taking over control of ITBP for "cohesion, coordination and synergy" to counter Chinese Army`s "offensives" acts.
"There is no plan to hand over the operational control of ITBP to Army," a senior government functionary told a news agency.
Citing the incursion by Chinese troops in Ladakh, he said the ITBP informed the Army authorities apart from all concerned in New Delhi about it and the armed forces personnel reached the spot within four hours.
"The ITBP is working in close coordination with the Army on the ground. There is no problem of so-called cohesion, coordination and synergy on the question of country`s territorial integrity," he said.
The Army is reportedly of the view that handing over of command of ITBP to Army will prove operationally productive as well as ensure optimal utilisation of resources especially in eastern Ladakh where ITBP is responsible for border guarding of 826 km of the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
The ITBP functions under the control of Home Ministry.
Meanwhile, the top government establishment has now started viewing the Chinese intrusion in Ladakh with increased seriousness, the senior functionary said.
The view of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), which met today under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, was that while patrols from both sides cross each other`s perceived LAC regularly, the fact that Chinese have put up tents and are not returning is now ringing alarm bells.
The top rung of the establishment is now waiting for a full analysis of the third flag meeting held yesterday before the government firms up its position on the entire issue and takes further action.
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