JAMMU: THE Indian Army has set up a voluntary civil defence force along the Line of Control in Jammu district, officials said on Friday. The force, comprising ex-serviceman and volunteer youth of border villages of the Akhnoor region, was raised in the Jourian border belt of the district, they said. “It aims to strengthen rear area security during war,” Defence spokesperson Lt Col Devender Anand said.

Named as ‘Manawar’, the force comprises 10 platoons based on the names of the villages, and sections based on the names of martyrs of the area on the concept of “sons of the soil”, he said. In order to prepare the force for its envisaged task and to keep them ready for employment in rear areas along with the army, it was trained under the guidance of the army in September and October this year, Lt Col Anand said. He said the force was trained for the envisaged role by carrying out detailed briefing, firing and practice of manning of vulnerable areas and domination of routes.