The nation's Himalayan borders have been guarded by the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP), which has a total strength of more than 90,000 jawans and officials, in addition to performing additional duties including deployment in Naxal-affected areas, law and order-related exercises, etc. The officers donning ITBP uniform serve as "Sentinels of the Himalayas".
This is a special and highly competent Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) that specialises in defending borders in dangerous and unfriendly terrain and weather conditions in the high Himalayas at elevations ranging mostly from 3,000 to 18,800 feet, where the temperature dives to -45 degrees Celsius. Even in adverse weather, the jawans are well-equipped to handle any eventuality. ITBP is capable of everything, from defending against Chinese attack to rescuing individuals from a Chamoli tunnel.
The force's troops are charged with upholding the highest standards of human dignity and national integrity in accordance with its motto, "Shaurya-Dridhata-Karmanishtha" (Valour-Determination-Devotion to Duty).
After the 1962 Chinese assault, the Indian government made the decision to establish a specialised force to protect the Himalayan frontiers in accordance with the "one border, one force" concept. Finally, the ITBP was established on October 24, 1962, with four battalions under the name Northern Frontier Rifles, and was based on the idea of an integrated guerilla, intelligence, and fighting force wholly independent in terms of logistics, supplies, and communication. The force had received extensive training on how to blend in with the population, gather intelligence, and, in the event of an invasion, keep the enemy off for a long period of time until reinforcements from the regular armed forces could take over. The group was designed to operate as guerilla fighters in any enemy-occupied territory to shock the enemy into leaving.
Only 1,472 people from various units made up the force's initial organisation of its four battalions. The government made the decision to enlarge it, and locals from hilly areas were recruited in preference because they were familiar with the topography and surroundings. The army was also employed for counterinsurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir and the Indo-Pak Wars of 1965 and 1971.
Later, with considerable changes in geostrategic circumstances, the initial mission of ITBP was anticipated to undergo certain alterations. In 1978, the government changed the organisation of the force to include nine service battalions, four specialised battalions, and two training facilities. The entire 3,488 km of the Indo-China border from the Karakoram pass in Jammu & Kashmir to Jachep La in Arunachal Pradesh was given to the ITBP in accordance with a committee of ministers' suggestions to adhere to "one border, one force." Currently, the force comprises 176 border outposts and 56 battalions.
STRENGTH AND STRUCTURE
The ITBP now has 56 service battalions, four speciality battalions, 17 training facilities, 15 sector headquarters, and 7 logistics facilities, with a total strength of roughly 90,000.
The force is led by a director general-rank IPS officer who supervises and commands 23 inspectors general in addition to deputy inspectors general, three further directors general, and three additional inspectors general (DIGs). The force is divided into "commands" at the ADG level and into "frontiers" at the IG level. Three departments make up ADGs: ADG headquarters, which handles operations and intelligence in addition to administrative duties; ADG western command, which is in charge of Leh and the Dehradun sector; and ADG eastern command, which is in charge of the Bhopal, Itanagar, and Lucknow boundaries.
Additionally, the force has stationed female employees in border outposts (BOPs) in the Himalayas. K9 dog squads and an animal transport wing/equestrian squad are also part of ITBP. A water wing is also part of the force.
The government approved an annual budget of Rs 6,150.15 crore for the ITBP in 2020–21, Rs 6,567.17 crore in 2021–2022, and Rs 7,461.28 crore in 2022–2023 respectively.
The field uniform worn by the ITBP task force is comfortable, climate-friendly, and has a camouflage pattern. The uniform's design, which features a variety of hues, including brown, olive and light khaki, was completed while taking into account elements like the deployment locations and operational environments for the personnel. The ITBP officers can occasionally be seen wearing ceremonial olive uniforms in addition to the combat gear.
Due to the various climatic environments that ITBP jawaans operate in, the ITBP uniform includes a number of climatic components. For instance, the combat jacket features the same disruptive pattern as their combat dress to give them extra warmth without compromising their safety due to the camouflage print.
All ITBP officers in India can purchase the combat dress, khaki uniform, or ITBP jackets online from the ITBP uniform collection of www.uniformer.in in accordance with the uniform requirements that must be adhered to by ITBP personnel. With free delivery and a simple return policy, the brand uniformer has emerged as a solution for the best-quality uniforms for police and paramilitary forces in India.
You can also read about BSF History and BSF Uniform.