Samdrupjongkhar Dzongdag Tharchen Lhendup has said that the dzongkhag administration, along with the relevant agencies, will very soon study whether Samrang Gewog needs a security checkpoint. This is good news, especially for the people of Samrang.
But then, how soon is very soon?
When people repeatedly raise such concerns, there surely must be reasons as to why they are compelled to do so. They don’t feel safe. The issue of border security in the gewog was raised in the recent Dzongkhag Tshogdu and also with the Prime Minister, who asked the relevant offices to compile a detailed report to assess if the gewog indeed needs a security checkpoint.
There may not be security and safety issues in the gewog as we speak, but residents feel that security could become an issue in the near future. It is a valid point, especially as developments of sorts are coming to the gewog that was once almost abandoned due to security reasons.
There are those who say that based on population number and lack of infrastructure it is not be feasible to have a police checkpoint in the gewog that shares border with place on the other side by the same name. We have our Samrang, and they have theirs. And there are others who say that there are not enough immigration officials to warrant an office in the gewog. These arguments, at the best, fall far too short.
That the gewog as yet do not have large enough number of people to deserve a security checkpoint just won’t cut it. Are we getting used to being a little too shot-sighted? Tact and matured handling of issues may be necessary, but bureaucratic procedures should not take so bafflingly long. A feasibility study was carried out and report submitted. The people are still waiting for a response.
Porous border without a checkpoint will allow unrestricted movement of people and vehicles. And with free movement will come many other things, some potentially unhealthy and threatening.
Samrang deserves a checkpoint. How soon it gets one will also matter.