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50 BOPs added on Sino-Indian border

Kathmandu: The government has been increasing security deployment in border areas that are considered sensitive in terms of strategic security and trade importance. Fifty Border Outposts (BOPs) of the Armed Police Force (APF) have been set up from Chhangru of Darchula to Olangchungola of Taplejung in 2077 BS. 

BOP of the Armed Police Force established at Olangchungola in Faktanglung Village Municipality-7 of Taplejung

In the last six months, BOPs have been set up in five places along the border with China, while 45 BOPs have been added in India. Earlier, there was not a single BOP in China. The Armed Police Force (APF) has set short-term, medium-term and long-term strategies for border security by setting up BOPs in 15 places in China and 485 places in India. Till 2076 BS, armed BOPs were deployed in only 120 places along the Nepal-India border. China shares about 1,414 km of Nepal's 15 districts and India shares about 1,880 km of border with 27 districts.

The government, dissatisfied with India's inclusion of Kalapani in its map last year, has been strengthening the presence of the Armed Police Force in sensitive border areas since then. The APF, which is also deployed in internal security, has recently been focused on security. The government has given approval to the armed forces to increase the number of BOPs to 500 within a few years. The number of BOPs has reached 34 in Province 1, 56 in Province 2, 7 in Bagmati, 2 in Gandaki, 34 in Lumbini and 37 in Far Western Province.

After April, 8 BOPs have been added in Province 1, 3 in Province 2, 2 in Bagmati, 5 in Lumbini and 27 in the Far West. Before April, there were only 10 BOPs in the Far West.

A senior official said that it was necessary to add about 10,000 manpower for BOP. At present, the Armed Forces has about 37,000 manpower. The armed forces have already set up a gulm at Bong in Susta of Nawalparasi and Kalapani area of ​​Darchula about 12 km towards Nepal. Before the establishment of Gulm, BOP was established in Chhangru last April. After the establishment of the BOP, Chief of Army Staff Purnachandra Thapa, Inspector General of Armed Police Shailendra Khanal and others reached Chhangru on July 19 and gave strict instructions on border security.

Not only that, he also gave encouragement saying that the army is with him in case of any difficulty at the border. This further encouraged the armed forces deployed in border security. Since then, the armed forces have been increasing regular patrols in Nepali territory near Kalapani. Citizens of the area are now happy after the road was dug on their own land by removing the compulsion to go to China via Tinker Bhanjyang from the Indian route.

Inspector General of Armed Police Shailendra Khanal said that the number of BOPs would be increased as far as possible. "The state has given us the responsibility to protect the border and provide security to the people living in the area. It is also a matter of national priority," he said. He said BOPs were being added to the border areas between China and India based on geographical location and strategic security and priorities.

Establishment of BOP in Chhangru of Darchula

In the first phase, the Ministry of Home Affairs has directed to manage the infrastructure and manpower to increase the number of BOPs to 221 in China and India. Although security has been deployed in areas where access to roads, electricity and telecommunications is weak, no attention has been paid to the mechanism to deal with emergencies. The army was stationed at the site of the avalanche, but the resources to deal with the emergency have not yet been managed. The government has not thought about the mechanism needed to respond to the alleged attacks on barracks and security personnel. BOP needs to pay more attention to this.

Armed Police Spokesperson DIG Raju Aryal said that resources are being managed in detail. According to him, the number of BOPs of the armed forces was only 87 by 2075 BS. Of these, only 47 places had their own permanent buildings and structures. It is also clear that border security has not been looked at with much interest before.

"We are working hard to set up VOPs in places where resources and manpower are managed. In other places, manpower and infrastructure are being managed from land," said spokesperson Aryal. "Strategies have been decided with short-term, medium-term and long-term plans."

Border Out Post file of the Armed Police Force in Lomanthang Village Municipality-1, Nechung. Photo: RSS

Armed BOPs have been set up in Chhangru of Darchula, Kimathangka of Sankhuwasabha, Olangchugola of Taplejung, Susta of Nawalparasi and Lomanthang of Mustang, which are considered sensitive from the point of view of strategic and commercial importance. In Chhangru, Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa inaugurated the Gulm some time ago by upgrading the BOP. Tourism Minister Yogesh Bhattarai inaugurated the BOP in Olangchungola last Wednesday. On Saturday alone, the armed forces have set up a BOP in Susta Gaonpalika-5, Balinagar in Nawalparasi of Lumbini province.

"We are committed to border security and border crime control. The government has also given high priority to this issue," said spokesperson Aryal. It seems that there should be manpower and resource management.

On the Chinese side, BOPs are being set up at Dhuli of Bajhang, Namkha (Tapche) of Humla, Mugu village of Mugu, Namdo of Dolpa, Chakhu of Manang and Chhekampar of Gorkha. These are all places of commercial importance connected with China. Border with China and for Nepal-China trade purposes Rasuwagadhi-Kerung, Liping (Tatopani) -Khasa, Korla-Liji, Hilsa-Taklakot, Dhuli-Taklakot, Tinkar-Taklakot, Olangchungola-Tingri, Sankhuwasabha Are

O&M manipulation to add BOP

In order to increase the number of BOPs at the border, the government had scrapped 31 units of the Armed Police Force for industrial security last July. In order to deploy all these manpower in the BOP for border security, 7 reserve battalions have been set up with 4,640 manpower in provinces 1, 2 and 2/2 in Lumbini and 1 in the southwestern province. Home Minister Ram Bahadur Thapa had called a high-ranking officer of the Armed Police Force at the ministry on April 7 and directed him to formulate an action plan to increase the number of BOPs at the border to 500. Accordingly, manpower will be deployed at 485 places on the Indian side of the border and 15 places on the Chinese side.

The Armed Forces has been given approval to use the physical infrastructure and land of 90 small, medium and large customs offices at the southern and northern border points under the Ministry of Finance as BOP. Currently, the distance from one BOP to another is 13 km to 18 km. According to the latest policy, if BOP is added, it will take less than 4 km to reach from one BOP to another. India has deployed SSB in 530 places bordering Nepal.

Then border security became a priority

When India released a controversial political and administrative map covering the decades-long encroachment of Nepali territory, including Kalapani-Lipulek and Limpiyadhura, Nepal sent a diplomatic note objecting. Nepal proposed to resolve the border dispute through talks. But India not only ignored that, but less than six months after the issuance of the unilateral map, on 26 April 2077, Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh unilaterally inaugurated the road connecting Mansarovar to China through the encroached Nepali territory.

After India, which forcibly kept security forces on Nepali soil, included it in the map, there was strong protest in Nepal against it. There was a demand for barbed wire and walls at the border. There was also a demand for the deployment of the army in border security. Amid the Corona epidemic, there was a street agitation against Indian encroachment and the Hepaha trend. Not only at the political and civic level, President Vidyadevi Bhandari to Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli have protested against Indian encroachment and pledged to return Nepali land.

As India increased encroachment, the Constitution was unanimously amended by the House of Representatives and the National Assembly to include Kalapani-Lipulek and Limpiyadhura on the map of Nepal. After that, the cabinet meeting held on May 19 decided to issue a new political and administrative map. Two days later, Minister for Land Management, Cooperatives and Poverty Alleviation Padmakumari Aryal unveiled the new map. After that, not only further tensions in Nepal-India relations, but also a state of non-communication was created.

Due to the encroachment of land, all the forces in the country united and protested against India. After that, the government also gave priority to border security and deployed manpower. Apart from border encroachment, there was a shortage of manpower to seal the border during the Corona epidemic, but there was more pressure to secure and manage the border. As a result, the government has prioritized the establishment of BOPs in important and human-transferable areas connected to India and China.

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