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Indo-Tibetan Border Police
Emblem of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police
Emblem of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police
Indo-Tibetan Border Police Flag
Indo-Tibetan Border Police Flag
AbbreviationITBP
MottoShauryaDridhataKarm Nishtha
ValourSteadfastness and Commitment
Agency overview
Formed1962
Employees89,432 Active personnel[1]
Annual budget7,461.28 crore (US$934.4 million) (2022-23)[2]
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdictionIN
Governing bodyMinistry of Home Affairs (India)
Constituting instrument
  • Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force Act, 1992
Operational structure
HeadquartersNew Delhi, India
Minister responsible
Agency executive
Facilities
Boats30
Website
itbpolice.nic.in

The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) is a border guarding force of India deployed along its borders with Tibet Autonomous Region. It is one of the seven Central Armed Police Forces, established in 1962 in the aftermath of the Sino-Indian War of 1962.

History

The force was raised in first week of 1962 war with a strength of 4 battalions for collecting intelligence, fighting conventional and guerrilla warfare and improving Indian communication systems along the Chinese border. It was raised under the CRPF Act. The took part in the 1965 Indo Pakistani War as well as the Indo Pakistani war of 1971.In 1978 the force was reorganized with 9 service battalions, 4 specialist battalions and 2 training centres.

It provided security services for the 1982 Asian Games as well as 7th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement and the 1983 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.[3]

In 1987, 6 more battalions of ITBP were raised to stop bank robberies in the state of Punjab, in the final stages of the insurgency in Punjab.[3]

In 1992, the ITBP was authorized under the new ITBP act, while it had previously been authorized under the CRPF Act. The rules of the ITBP act were framed in 1994.[3]

From 1989 to 2004 , the ITBP also had a minor presence in Jammu and Kashmir to combat the insurgency in Kashmir.[3]

In 2004 the ITBP took over border patrol responsibilities for the entire 3,448 km long border, replacing the Assam Rifles in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.The ITBP previously worked in cooperation with the Assam Rifles for patrolling the border. This decision was made on the basis of recommendations made by a committee set up in the aftermath of the 1999 Kargil War under the principle of "One Border, One Force".[3]

Organization

The ITBP is divided into 2 commands which are headed by an Additional Director General of Police and 5 frontiers each headed by an Inspector General of Police(IG) .These frontiers are further divided into 15 sectors each headed by a Deputy Inspector General (DIG). [3]

It has 60 battalions (56 regular and 4 specialist),17 training centres and 7 logistics establishments along with 2 additional rescue battalions which are deputed to the National Disaster Response Force.[3]

Roles

The primary role of the ITBP is to patrol the 3,488  km long India-China border from the Karakoram Pass in Ladakh to Diphu La in Arunachal Pradesh,for which it has 32 battalions and 157 outposts. The border posts patrolled by ITBP are as high as 18,900 and vulnerable to high velocity storms, snow blizzards, avalanches, and landslides, besides the hazards of high altitude and extreme cold, where the temperature dips up to minus 40-degree Celsius. The ITBP conducts long and short range patrols to keep an effective vigil on the inaccessible and uninhabited areas located near the border.[3]

Disaster rescue is the other major role of the ITBP. It is the first responder for natural disasters in the Himalayas and has 8 Regional Response Centres in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Northeast India.

The force has undertaken numerous mountaineering expeditions. Its skiers have been national champions, who have competed in Winter Olympics. Its river rafters have created international history in rafting through the turbulent white waters of the Brahmaputra, the Indus and the Ganges. The Force has created a milestone by becoming the first Central Paramilitary Force to win the Best Marching Contingent Trophy in the Republic Day parades in 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2011. It broke new ground in 1998 when it sent the first-ever police tableau of the country to participate in the Republic Day Parade. ITBP is at the forefront of a movement for the preservation of Himalayan environment and ecology.

ITBP had provided a quarantine camp at Chhawala in New Delhi for potentially infected persons during the COVID-19 pandemic who were evacuated from Wuhan. It had also set up camps at its other locations in the country for further quarantine.[4] It has also bee credited with running the world's largest Sardar Patel Covid Care Centre at SPCCC, Radha Soami Beas, Chhatarpur, New Delhi when it treated coronavirus patients during the 1st, 2nd and 3rd waves of the COVID-19 pandemic in New Dehli. [5]

Chitkul Village, as seen from the road to the ITBP checkpost

ITBP has been involved in greening the Himalayan regions especially in Inner Himalayas. Being the only human presence in some areas close to China border, it has taken on itself the task of maintaining the delicate balance of flora and fauna.

Personnel

Training

ITBPs major training centre is located at Mussoorie, in Uttarakhand. The Training Academy was established in 1976 and trains officers of the force. The training programme for Subordinate Officers of the force are conducted at Central Training College Alwar and Basic Training College, Bhanu (Haryana). Specialised training programmes in rock craft, explosives handling etc. are also conducted here. Ace mountaineer and Padma Shri awardee, Harbhajan Singh, IG heads this institution. Keeping in view the evolving security scenario of the country, ITBP established a Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare (CIJW) School at an altitude of 6,000 feet in the heart of extremely tough Himalayan mountains, at Mahidanda in Uttarkashi district. The CIJW school (distinct from the premier CIJWS of the Indian Army) provides training to ITBP's men and officers in anti-Naxal operations. Jungle warfare, handling of explosives, rock craft, survival in adverse conditions, unarmed combat, and guerrilla warfare are some of the subjects taght here. On account of demands for realistic anti-Naxal training the CIJW School of ITBP was shifted to Belgaum Karnataka

The training regime, formulated under the close supervision of Rajiv Mehta, IPS and executed on the ground by Sanjeev Raina, DIG is extremely demanding both mentally and physically, needing special preparation. The presence of the force along the Indo China border where it maintains vigil along the extremely difficult high altitude border area. The troops of the force keep a sharp eye on any violation of the border, trans-border smuggling, and affords a sense of security to the remotely located isolated settlements. The altitude where the troops are deployed range up to 18,800 feet and the temperature plummets to minus 30 degrees during winter with snowfall of more than ten feet.

The Himveers are taught to function effectively while always keeping in mind human rights and the codes of war which always guide their conduct.

The Basic Training Centre at Bhanu, Haryana ITBP Academy at Mussourie, and the Mountaineering & Skiing Institute at Auli run the training programmes and conduct indoor and outdoor training activities, in pursuance of this mission.

ITBP is building a full-fledged recreation and training centre in Belgaum at Halbhavi. Belgaum provides the best climate for recreation and ITBP will relocate the personal and will have large family bases in Belgaum for its soldiers after high altitude stress.

Personnel of veterinary wing of ITBP are trained in yak handling and management, at ICAR-National Research Institute on Yak. Yaks are used by ITBP for transportation and logistics.

The ITBP is trained in the Civil Medical Camp for disaster management, and addressing nuclear, biological and chemical disasters

It has also established a National Centre for Training in Search, Rescue & Disaster response at Bhanu, Haryana which is imparting training to personnel of ITBP and other Paramilitary / State Police Forces. There is also a training centre for dogs at Basic Training centre situated at Bhanu. The centre is known as NICD.

Community activities

Sports

The ITBP organize an ice-hockey team which is considered one of the strongest in the country with many of its players also participating in the national team.[6] The team have won the Indian Ice Hockey Championship on at least three occasions, most recently in 2019.[7]

Social work

ITBP also conducts civic action programmes and Border Area Development Programmes for development of local population in the border areas and areas where the Force is deployed.It conducts a large number of civic action programmes in the remote border and terrorist affected areas to provide free and expert medical, health and hygiene care to the civilian population in remote villages.

ITBP is the only Central Armed Police Force in India, which has combatised stress counsellors in its field formations Including the ranks of Deputy Commandants ESC, Assistant Commandant-ESC, Inspector-ESC, Sub Inspector-ESC and Head Constable-ESC. These uniformed stress counsellors also play a major role in improving education for ITBP wards and the local children near ITBP Units. There are 21 ITBP public schools across the country run by ESC personnel of ITBP Police Force.[8]

ITBP personnel interacting with civilians in Nathu La

ITBP schools are located in remote areas like Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Leh and Sonipat, Dwarka Delhi.[9] [10] [11] [12]

Himveer Wives' Welfare Association (HWWA)

Himveer Wives' Welfare Association is a welfare wing of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP).[13] It is a non-profit organisation that works for welfare of spouses, children or any dependents of ITBP personnel.[14] It is registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860. The association aims to rehabilitate battle casualties and widows of those who are killed in action in the line of duty. Other than that, the association organises vocational training and empowers the beneficiaries. There are more than 88,000 members in the association. The association also works for the welfare of local population in the remote Himalayan region.[15] The formal registration of the family welfare organization of ITBP named "Himveer Wives' Welfare Association" was done on 19 May, 1998 in New Delhi. Its motto is ‘Development through active involvement’. It organises annual exhibitions to showcase rare products of Himalayan region, the profit of which is used for welfare of the families of ITBP.[16][17] It also honors Veer Naris (War Widows) on special occasions and provides them assistance when needed.[18] It organises its Raising Day every year and announces various welfare programmes for its members as well as conducts training programs. [19][20]

Line of duty deaths

Due to the fact that the Indo Tibetan Border Police rarely sees combat unlike most of the other Central Armed Police Forces, the number of fallen officers is relatively low. Many of these deaths are caused due to natural disasters.

Honours and decorations

In the course of active duties, the force has earned a number of civil and service honours, and decorations.

Name of award Number
Padma Shree 6
Kirti Chakra 2
Shaurya Chakra 6
Sena Medal 1
President's Police Medal for Gallantry 19
Police Medal for Gallantry 92
President's Police Medal for Distinguished Service 101
Police Medal for Meritorious Service 292
Prime Minister's Life Saving Medal 86

See also

References

[21]

  1. ^ "MHA Annual Report 2016-2017" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 August 2017.
  2. ^ "Rs 1.85 lakh crore allocation to MHA in budget". The Economic Times. Retrieved 1 February 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Philip, Snehesh Alex. "Baptism by fire: Raised in first week of 1962 war, how ITBP has grown in size & special role". The Print.
  4. ^ Dua, Rohan (13 March 2020). "India fights coronavirus: ITBP to set up 4 new quarantine sites". The Times of India. Retrieved 13 March 2020.
  5. ^ "ITBP COVID centre with 500 oxygen-beds starts in Delhi; over 110 admitted".
  6. ^ "Indo-Tibet Border Police Defeat Army To Win Ladakh Ice Hockey Tournament".
  7. ^ "Ladakh: ITBP wins National Ice hockey tournament".
  8. ^ "Home | Indo Tibetan Border Police, Ministry of Home Affairs". Archived from the original on 27 September 2017. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  9. ^ "Border infrastructure cause for concern, says Rajnath Singh". 3 October 2017.
  10. ^ "U'khand wants 5 districts to be part of border area scheme | Dehradun News - Times of India". The Times of India.
  11. ^ "ITBP organised Excursion Tour for Border Area Students | Arunachal24". 19 November 2019.
  12. ^ "School children from Kondagaon district of Chhattisgarh, call on Union Home Minister".
  13. ^ "Himveer Wives Welfare Association".
  14. ^ "Don't let your husband remarry, ITBP tells wives of its troops in duty book".
  15. ^ "Himveer Wives Welfare Ass'n donate to villagers | the Arunachal Times".
  16. ^ "ITBP should expand scope of wives' welfare wing: Maneka Gandhi". The Economic Times.
  17. ^ "ITBP mela inaugurated".
  18. ^ "HWWA hold special felicitation programme".
  19. ^ "Miss Universe at HWWA Function".
  20. ^ "HWWA to organise digital awareness classes for veer naries". The Hindu.
  21. ^ ITBP Assistant Commandant GD LDCE Result Archived 9 October 2014 at the Wayback Machine UGCTET. Retrieved 9 October 2014.