Addressing his men at “sainik sammelans (meeting with troops)” held in Mana and Joshimath, Deswal said the “nation was grateful to them for their commitment and dedication towards duty and safeguarding the borders in the tough climatic conditions” of the Himalayan region.
“The DG stressed on the need to focus on health and urged all personnel to keep fitness as their top priority. He also told jawans to ensure that they undertake 2-3 hours of exercise daily for leading a healthy life in the tough mountainous terrain,” a force spokesperson quoted him as saying.
The troops also interacted with the DG and shared with him the problems they face, including deployment of at least one helicopter sortie per month for their high-altitude posts so that fresh rations can be brought in and sick troops sent down for treatment.
Deswal also visited Badrinath and Auli located in the same region, and he led a 20-km-long trek with his skiers and personnel to the Gurson top located at a height of 12,460 feet, the spokesperson added.
Auli in Joshimath is also the base for the forces’ Mountaineering and Skiing Institute.
The 90,000-strong force is primarily tasked with guarding the nearly 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China, that runs from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh on India’s eastern flank, apart from rendering a variety of internal security duties.
The paramilitary force along with the Army is engaged in a standoff with the Chinese military in the Ladakh region at present.