Where is the Siachen Base Camp located

The lack of tourism has led to a thinning of the population in the suburbs

The Indian Army has decided to grant permits for civilian expeditions to Siachen Base Camp and the Kumar Post in Ladakh, according to a report in The Times of India. While the decision was actually made in October last year, its implementation appears to "show the Indian government's assertiveness on this matter," amid tensions on the border with China, the report said. Siachen, the largest non-polar glacier in the world and the highest battlefield, lies west of the Galwan Valley, where 20 Indian soldiers were killed during a violent conflict with China. Regarding calls for more areas to be developed so local residents can benefit from tourism, the Times of India report said the move could also spell a possible rethink about future closings of villages to civilians. According to the report, five new routes were opened in the border areas in December 2018, most of which run along or lead to the Actual Control Line (LAC) with China. Tourism has brought economic growth to Leh and Nubra in the north and Man-Merak along the Pangong-Tso, but the lack of similar trails has resulted in population thinning in the forward areas, the report said. According to the Times of India report, Siachen Base Camp is about 225 km north of Leh and is connected by a black-tipped highway. All visitors to the area are asked to follow the protocols due to the Covid-19 pandemic to ensure safety. Read the full report in The Times of India