Home Minister Amit Shah today asked the Land Ports Authority of India (LPAI) to prepare a roadmap for the next 25 years on trade with India’s neighboring countries through land routes.
Addressing the 10th Foundation Day of the LPAI as the Chief Guest, he said “We have a land border of 15,000 kms and there are different challenges along this border.”
“We have to aim at creating an impenetrable security circle by adopting State-of-the-Art Technology,” he said. To achieve these goals, he said five spans of five years should be planned, along with one-year targets, to achieve the goals.
There is hardly any country whose land border is as challenging as India’s and whose land border has as many opportunities as India’s, the Home Minister said.
“We will facilitate trade to seven countries adjacent to our land border to send products out of India,” he said. Much attention should have been paid to these land routes after Independence. The LPAI has worked to fill the gaps.
It is the responsibility of LPAI to expand business by complying with rules and regulations, to facilitate faster cultural exchanges, and make them stronger and meaningful, as they have been existing for thousands of years. There is need to build stronger bonds with the neighbours, outside the realm of politics and diplomacy, he said.
“We will also have to strengthen the tradition of setting up trade corridors, but along with this, communication with security agencies and regular meetings are also very important,” he said.
“Someone can try to jeopardize our security, so communication of LPAI with the CAPFs and security agencies deployed on different borders is also very important,” he said.
People to people linkages in border areas can become a means of thwarting danger. No country can change the nature of its relations with another country, however people’s sentiments have a great influence, therefore the LPAI will have to look at this aspect from a different perspective to strengthen relations
“Our border security and border management policy is very clear, creating strong infrastructure connecting the country along borders, full implementation of welfare schemes to prevent migration from border areas, providing good connectivity in border areas, promoting public awareness and promoting trade through land borders,” the Home Minister said.
A mistake took place when the country was partitioned, he said. “Kartarpur Sahib was only six kms away, I do not know what went amiss, but when a festival of the first Guru used to come along, there always was a feeling of sadness,” he said.
“Today the Kartarpur Sahib Corridor has given Sikhs and Hindus from around the world a route to visit Kartarpur for worship and the LPAI has provided this medium to express their faith,” Shah said.