- Recently, the armies of India and Myanmar conducted a “coordinated operation” against insurgents in Myanmar territory to avert a possible threat to the Kaladan multi-modal transit transport project.
Kaladan multi-model transit transport project
- India entered into a framework agreement with Myanmar in April 2008 to facilitate implementation of the project.
- Objective: To create a multi-modal sea, river and road transport corridor for shipment of cargo from the eastern ports of India to Myanmar through Sittwe port as well as to North-Eastern part of India via Myanmar.
- It has three different stretches involving:
- Inland Water
- Road transport
- The longest among of them is shipping segment from Kolkata to Sittwe port (approx 540 km) in Myanmar.
- On the Indian side, work is on to extend the Aizawl-Saiha National Highway by 90 km to the international border at Zorinpui.
- The Kaladan multi-modal transit transport project is being viewed as India’s gateway to the Southeast Asia
- It is expected to contribute to the economic development of the North-Eastern States of India, by opening up the sea route for the products.
- It also provides a strategic link to the North-East, thereby reducing pressure on the Siliguri Corridor.
- The project not only serves the economic, commercial and strategic interests of India, but also contributes to the development of Myanmar, and its economic integration with India.
- Being a key connectivity project, it will promote economic, commercial and strategic links between India and Myanmar.
- Furthermore, the project will help India counterbalance China’s growing influence in Myanmar.
- The Assam Rifles has the responsibility to guard the international border with Myanmar.
- After a series of meetings between personnel from both the countries, it was decided to carry out the coordinated operation.
- The focus of the operation was to repress the members of the Arakan Army, an insurgent group in Myanmar.
- During the operation, the Indian Army enhanced the security along the border from Nagaland and Manipur to ensure that the insurgents do not cross over to the Indian side.
- The Indian Army also helped the Myanmarese Army by providing them intelligence.
- There were also inputs that some members of the Arakan Army were also planning to sneak into India.
- Setting up of camps by the insurgent groups was being viewed as a grave concern by armies of the two countries.
- Around a dozen insurgent operating bases and camps were smashed along the India-Myanmar border.
- The operation was also undertaken keeping in view the safety of Indian workers engaged in the project.
- Additional troops were moved to the international border areas, besides deploying the Assam Rifles personnel.
Section : Environment & Ecology