Par panel slams Defence ministry for its "casual attitude"

"It is an acknowledged fact that infrastructure is being created on the borders by countries particularly China, the Ministry has not maintained any data of such activities on borders... this speaks volumes about Ministry's casual attitude towards such an important matter," the Standing Committee on Defence said in its report on border roads.

Stressing on the need for keeping a watch on construction activities along the country's borders by its neighbours, the panel said there is an "urgent need to ensure that Indian plans are in consonance with impeding security challenges."

The Committee said the problems along the different portions of the country's extensive borders have aggravated in recent times due to cross-border terrorism.

"Besides the infrastructure being created on borders by our neighbouring countries, particularly China further pose challenges before the country," the report added.

Commenting on Ministry's two Long Term perspective Plans (LTTPI and LTTP II) for augmenting border roads, the Committee said out of the 277 roads of the length of 13,100 km to be built till 2012, only 29 are completed and work is in progress in 168 other roads.

"No work has yet started in respect of 80 roads measuring 2624 Km," it added.

Pointing out that the Defence Ministry has also admitted that it would not be able to meet the 2012 deadline, the Committee pulled up the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) for its "sense of complacency" in completing the work assigned to it.

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