India Needs To Immediately Build 73 Roads To Reach China Border And Avoid Any Future Standoff

Amid the reports of Chinese army returning to Doklam and quietly resuming its construction activities, the Indian army might have to brace itself for another standoff against a known enemy. Although the report that came from the US has been firmly denied by the Indian army, the possibility of the Chinese army resuming construction in Doklam in near future can’t be denied.

Last year, India-China had a 73-day long standoff at Doklam tri-junction that connects India-Bhutan-China. Since Bhutan is India’s protectorate, India objected to Chinese construction on the area, which Bhutan and China, both stake claims to. Indian army rushed to the spot and did the needful.

However, in the absence of motorable roads connecting borders to important military establishments, around 120 soldiers had to walk for 19 hours to reach the spot and then they took positions against the Chinese.

Despite repeated alarms, stand-offs and threats from the Chinese, the Indian government hasn’t budged at all. The apathy can be understood by the fact that in 2005-06, the government had approved the construction of 73 roads alongside China border.
The work for it was supposed to be completed in 2012, but even out of 73 proposed roads, only 34 have been completed.

In May last year, the longest bridge with length 9.2 km over river Brahmaputra which enables troops’ smooth movement to North-Eastern states especially Arunachal Pradesh which shares the border with China was inaugurated.

Modi government was hailed for this effort, but this 9.2 km long concrete on polls can’t bridge the deficit that India has against the infrastructure developed by China alongside 4056 km (2520 miles) long border with India.

But inaugurating a few miles long bridges won’t help in case of any serious escalation by China.

Since the was of 1962, a theory has been given that India isn’t building up that infrastructure alongside the border so that Beijing doesn’t get easy path if at all it tries to repeat 1962 endeavour. But this argument isn’t strong enough and especially for a country that dreams to become an asian power.

Minister of State (home affairs) Kiran Rijiju gave the recent status of the construction of roads near China border in Lok Sabha during on the ongoing Monsoon session. He put his answer on the floor of the house saying, “The Government has undertaken construction of 73 roads of operational significance along Indo-China border. Out of 73 roads, 48 roads are being constructed by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and 25 roads by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). Out of 73 roads, 34 roads have been completed.”

Last year, India-China had a 70-day long standoff at Doklam tri-junction that connects India-Bhutan-China. Since Bhutan is India’s protectorate, India objected to Chinese construction on the area which Bhutan and China, both stake claims to. A porter spotted the Chinese machines and construction material and India ordered to troop movement from Arunachal Pradesh. But since we don’t have roads till miles insides Indian territory, the soldiers had to walk for 19 hours to reach to the point of intrusion.

India had deployed 120 soldiers there and since there were no roads, the army had to use the company of 300 porters, raised long back, perhaps for this purpose to supply rations and other necessities to the soldiers.

Like all other developmental works in India, here too lack of cohesion between state and centre, various departments and even ministries at Centre has contributed to the delay in the completion of these projects. However, the minister decided to call it a ‘dynamic process’.

“The construction of roads is a dynamic process which takes into account various challenges faced by executing agencies like tough working condition, inhospitable terrain, non-availability of construction material, mobilization of goods and logistic and vulnerability of the area to natural calamity, earthquake, landslide etc.”

The speed with which things move in India is slower than one can imagine and the administrative bottlenecks that come up at bureaucratic levels are major reasons why the majority of the projects don’t finish in time, even if it involves country’s security.

“The Committee constituted under the Chairmanship of Special Secretary (Border Management), MHA meets periodically to sort out various bottlenecks in the implementation of the project with all agencies concerned including State Governments. Empowered Committee has also been constituted by the States of Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Tripura to resolve issues related to land acquisition, forest/wild clearance, allotment of quarries etc. Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change has accorded general approval under Section (2) of the Forest (Conservation) Act 1980 for diversion of forest land for construction and widening of border roads in the areas falling within 100 Kms aerial distance from the Line of Actual Control (LAC). MoD has given enhanced financial and administrative powers to executives of BRO and also allowed outsourcing to augment the capacity of BRO,” read minister’s answer.

While China has signed the pact with Nepal for building the rail link between Kathmandu and Tibet, India since 2013 has been talking about building railway links near borders with China. In 2013, reports came that government is planning to lay 14 rail links near borders of China and Pakistan, and even now surveys are being done.
India’s recent push to infrastructure development

Following are the projects India is pushing to complete and their status near borders with China.

1. The 9 km long tunnel at Zojila pass: PM laid the foundation stone in August last year.

2. The 3.5 km long tunnel at Sonmarg: work in progress

3. The 10.9 km long Chenani-Nashri tunnel on Jammu Srinagar highway: inaugurated

4. The 498 km long Bilaspur-Manali-Leh railway line: a survey in progress

5. The 44 km long Agartala-Udaipur new railway line: work in progress

6. The 21 km Dudhnoi-Mendipathar railway line: project completed

7. The 20 km Harmuti-Naharlagun railway line: project completed

8. Trans-Arunachal highway linking three towns Tawang-Kanubari-Akajan: in progress

9. The 377.5 km long Bhalukpong-Tenga-Tawang railway line: the survey in progress

10. The 248 km long North Lakhimpur-Bame-Along railway line: the survey in progress

11. The 4.9 km long Bogibeel bridge: likely to be inaugurated by October this year.

B bridge Assam, India

The Dhola-Sadiya bridge in Assam

12. The 9.15 km long Dhola-Sadiya bridge: inaugurated last year.

13. The 226 km long Pasighat-Tezu-Parsuramkund-Rupai railway line: the survey in progress

 

 

 

 

 

Source:- Indian Times



from Indian Defence Update https://ift.tt/2LZ9sUs
via IFTTT
India Needs To Immediately Build 73 Roads To Reach China Border And Avoid Any Future Standoff India Needs To Immediately Build 73 Roads To Reach China Border And Avoid Any Future Standoff Reviewed by Defense Alert on 08:50:00 Rating: 5

No comments:

Defense Alert. Powered by Blogger.