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  • Recently, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has announced to spend 10% funds of the Border Area Development Programme (BADP) only to improve the infrastructure along the China border.

The Border Area Development Programme (BADP)

  • The BADP was launched by the Ministry of Home Affairs in 1986-87 as part of a comprehensive approach to Border Management.
  • BADP was initiated in the border areas of the western region during the Seventh Five Year Plan (1985-90), for ensuring balanced development of border areas through development of infrastructure and promotion of a sense of security among the border population.
  • The States covered are Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal.
  • The Border Area Development Programme (BADP) has been allocated Rs. 784 crore for projects in areas of States/UTs inhabited along the Indo-China border i.e. Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Ladakh, Sikkim and Uttarakhand.
  • The fund is distributed to the border States and Union Territories (UTs) depending on various criteria such as the length of the international border and population.
  • Under this, the projects for developing strategically important villages and towns in border areas will be given priority.
  • Construction of roads, bridges, primary schools, health infrastructure, playfields, irrigation works, etc. will be undertaken within 10 km of the border.
  • Security Forces such as the Border Security Force (BSF), deployed along the Bangladesh and Pakistan borders, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) on the China border, the Sashastra Seema Bal along the Nepal border, and the Assam Rifles stationed along the Myanmar border would provide independent feedback on the projects in the blocks concerned and may be tasked to conduct social audit of the works, it stated.
  • These forces will play a crucial role in identification of the villages and implementation of the related work.

SIGNIFICANCE

  • Bridging Socio-economic gaps:
  • It is an important intervention of the Government to bring about development of border areas by supplementing the State Plan Funds to bridge the gaps in socio- economic infrastructure on one hand and improving the security environment in border areas on the other.
  • Safe and Secure Borders:
  • It would create a positive perception of care and encourage people to stay on in the border areas leading to safe and secure borders.
  • This would help integrate these areas with the hinterland.
  • Better Management of the Border:
  • In the light of the recent incident of face-off between India and China the creation of infrastructure is a strategic move for the better management of the border areas.
  • It will provide faster mobility to troops and equipment to the border with China.
  • India is continuing the infrastructure for better connectivity to the Line of Actual Control with China. E.g. the construction of a strategic tunnel in Uttarakhand as a part of the Char Dham Pariyojana.

CONCLUSION

  • For a very long time China has been claiming various parts of India as its territory.
  • The infrastructure development would ensure the territorial integrity of India along the borders.
  • There is also a need of strengthening the Border Road Organisations (BRO) so that projects can run without any hurdle.
  • As the India-China border is witnessing the highest tensions since the Doklam stand-off in 2017, It is required that development projects must be implemented across the border to make it safe and secure for all.

 
 

 

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