The Centre is thinking of deploying intelligence officials along the China frontier in Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim to provide alerts about possible Chinese transgression bids, Union home ministry sources said on Thursday.
“The move to deploy central intelligence officials along the Line of Actual Control has been prompted by the frequent border skirmishes and brazen aggression shown by the Chinese troops,” a home ministry official said.
He said the intelligence officials would provide the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) with information about the Chinese troops, gathered through surveillance systems installed along the LAC.
“This will help curb transgression bids by the Chinese troops who often infiltrate into our side. Over the past one year, Chinese troops have made frontline formations in several sensitive zones and are continually ramping up infrastructure,” the official said.
A security official attached to the home ministry said: “The additional posts manned by intelligence officials will be called border intelligence posts. They will use all available surveillance systems to monitor the movements of the Chinese troops along the frontier and will immediately alert the border guarding force and the army in case of any infiltration bid.”
The ITBP, which guards the 3,488km China frontier, is the country’s first line of defence while the army is stationed behind it. Some 1,346km of the frontier falls in the eastern sector.
Intelligence reports say that China is continuing to increase its troop presence along the LAC in the Arunachal-Sikkim sector and “the Chinese army has been entering increasingly deeper into India-claimed territory”, the security official said.
Sources said the Chinese army had set up additional military camps along the LAC across from the Tawang sector of Arunachal.
Over 500 Chinese troops had crossed the LAC in Yangtze in the Tawang sector and begun vandalising Indian military posts last December, causing a clash with Indian troops that left around 20 Indian soldiers injured.
Defence minister Rajnath Singh had then said the Chinese troops had tried to “transgress” the LAC and “unilaterally change the status quo” at Yangtze but their attempt was foiled by the Indian army.
In August this year, Beijing released the 2023 edition of its “standard map” showing Arunachal and the Aksai Chin region, occupied by it in the 1962 war, as Chinese territory. India lodged a protest through diplomatic channels against the map.
In eastern Ladakh, Indian and Chinese troops have been locked in a border standoff at several points, with the Chinese estimated to have occupied close to 2,000sqkm of India-claimed territory since May 2020.