Mandarin is now made must for ITBP recruitment

This year onward, learning of the language has been made part of the one-year training course for recruits,” said a senior ITBP officer.

“We are a force fully deployed on the border with China. It is only prudent that every personnel should know the language. We interact with Chinese soldiers almost on a daily basis. A good knowledge of their language may help avoid misunderstandings and lead to better resolution of confrontations that arise out of ground zero developments,” said the officer.

Only about 150 officers and men in the 90,000-strong force which guards the 3,488 km-long India-China border know the language. Most of these officers learnt it during mid-career training programmes held at Army training academies or at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU).

Sources said the move is aimed at making the entire force have a workable knowledge of the language so that they can communicate with China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers without difficulty.

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