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  SSB not only guards the border, it creates a sense of nationhood among locals
 FORCE team at border pillar on Indo-Nepal border

Siliguri, North Bengal: Around 1,500 metres above the sea level, near Okaity border outpost, a young SSB jawan was returning to his barrack after a day’s long work at around 3pm. It was a cold afternoon with the temperature hovering around seven to eight degrees centigrade. With a combat uniform and a riffle on his shoulder, he looked like a typical 24-year-old soldier-at–work. In fact, according to him, most of the soldiers in the border outpost belong to that age group, with the youngest being 20 and the oldest around 25.
The FORCE team accompanied him to the border outpost from the Okaity village, a five-minute-walk. According to him, he works for about six- to eight-hours a day, depending on the requirement.
The requirement usually arises when the teams are sent on election duties and sometimes on rescue operations and so on. On that particular day, he had finished his routine six-hour patrol and Naka duties and then was heading to the BOP for a two-hour guarding and dak duties. Few metres before reaching his destination, he pointed at a structure to show the BOP and his barrack. The structure seemed to be a temporary structure, most of which was made of wood. Most of the BOPs in such mountainous, inaccessible areas are such temporary structures. 

He had applied for a constable position back in his hometown and after receiving the joining letter in about eight months’ time, he was sent for training to Assam. He was then posted at the border outpost after his training and was given rotational shifts in the battalion headquarters and the BOPs, under that battalion.
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