High-end SUVs for troops on India-China border

High-end SUVs for troops on India-China border

 Expensive SUVs have for the first time been deployed at high-altitude border posts of the ITBP along the India-China border to transport troopers.

Four white-coloured Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs), 2 Toyota Fortuner and as many Ford Endeavour, with a price tag of around Rs 25 lakh each, have been deployed by the border guarding force at some of its forward locations over 13,000 ft above the sea level at Burtse and Dungti in the Ladakh sector and Menchuka, over 6,000 ft, in Arunachal Pradesh.

No other border guarding force or army formations in forward areas have ever used high-end SUVs for troops, usually found zipping across roads in urban locations.
The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) headquarters here has issued a directive that the troopers and officers will use these vehicles only for operational tasks to prevent their misuse.

ITBP Director General Krishna Chaudhary said while the force has several types of four-wheelers, including those with 4x4 drive facility for high-altitude driving at its border locations, SUV platforms, which are powered by diesel-run heavy-duty engines were required for quick movement in these mountainous areas.

“We were looking for some good high-power vehicles at those heights where regular vehicles are not as adept as an SUV. The Ministry of Home Affairs sometime back approved our proposal and we purchased four such four-wheelers in the first batch.
“I can tell you that none of the senior officers in the force including me have such smart and powerful vehicles for their movement as compared to what our men have now,” he said. In order to make sure they are utilised for the task they have been sent for, the ITBP boss said, strict instructions have been issued that these vehicles will carry troops while on duty and during patrol, officers can utilise them only when leading such tasks, in order to prevent their misuse.

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