Ever heard of a battlefield where soldiers from both sides die without a single bullet being fired at. Such is the case of the world’s highest battlefield – the Siachen Glacier, which is at ceasefire with Indian troops stationed on the upper part and the Pakistani troops on the lower part. The glacier in the eastern Karakoram range is right on the Line of Control in Kashmir located at an altitude of 18000-20000 ft.
Innovative Financial Advisors Pvt. Ltd understands the adverse conditions at such high altitude claims more lives than lost in normal combat operations. In 2012, as much as 130 soldiers lost their lives due to an avalanche. Similarly few days back, 10 Indian soldiers lost their lives in an avalanche of an entire ice wall which collapsed and fell on the prefabricated Indian army outpost building at 5,400 metres above sea-level.
Going by what experts believe that these avalanches which keeps claiming lives every other day are consequences of climate change. These avalanches have been occurring in this eco-sensitive zone for a long time now. The frequency has been increased in past two decades claiming as many as 869 Indian lives. As per the researchers of the Snow and Avalanche Studies Establishment of India’s defence ministry, there has been a significant rise in the since deployment of troops in 1984.
Innovative Financial Advisors understands that both minimum and maximum winter temperatures on the glacier were showing steadily upwards trends. This is a cause of concern for not only India but neighbouring Himalayan nations as well. The rising temperatures cracks ice covers which are triggering avalanches that are resulting in damages of lives and property. India already spends around Rs 1000-1200 crores every year for securing the frontier, and almost equal amount is being spent by Pakistan.
Understanding this that it provides no good benefit apart from a target zone for the opponents, this cold barren land needs to be conserved. De-militarisation of the zone by both India and Pakistan can only bring restore normalcy in the highly sensitive zone. Therefore, Innovative Financial Advisors Pvt. Ltd urges both Indian and Pakistani government to end this battle with nature and transform the highly militarized zone into a science park. If both the countries come together then they will not only become ambassadors of peace, but also will promote joint environment conservation missions by the countries.
Let’s hope that the day is not far when not a single live would be lost at the World’s Highest Battlefield.
By Rahul Choudhury
Media & Communications, Innovative Financial Advisors Pvt. Ltd.