New Delhi, Oct 23 (UNI) For the first time the Indo-Tibetan Border Police is including a 'women component' in the exclusive 'high-altitude force', presently engaged in recruiting seven additional battalions.
Of the sanctioned 20 battalions while 13 have been already deployed, among the seven left a women component of 480 personnel would be formed, said ITBP Director General Vikram Srivastava addressing the media today.
''This is the first time that women are being recruited keeping in mind the growing needs in VIP security and their necessity in assisting women and children during the annual Kailash Mansarovar Yatra,'' he said.
Besides, they would be deployed at the Nathu La Pass, where trade between India and China has begun, as women in large numbers come from the other side and they would be helpful in escorting them, he explained.
''Their recruitment would be over by December,'' he said.
On fresh recruitment the DG said the newly raised battalion while helping in rotation of duties would be used for internal security operations as well.
''Not just election duties but the ITBP is also being used for VIP security, deployment at Rashtrapati Bhawan and Vice-President's House and for counter insurgency operations in Chamba.'' With the newly raised 20 battalions the ITBP would increasingly be used for deployment in plains, said Mr Srivastava adding that for this land was being acquired in Haldwani, Allahabad, Kanpur, Siliguri, Dibrugarh and Tejpur to get them stationed.
The DG also said that presently only 40 personnel of the ITBP were in Afghanistan adding that the 350 men stationed there for the Delaram-Jalanj road project have since been withdrawn following the projects's completion.
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