NEW DELHI: Seventeen new police battalions, comprising 18,700 personnel, will be raised in Jammu and Kashmir and the Naxal-hit states with Central assistance.
The Home Ministry has moved a proposal for raising 17 India Reserve Battalions, of which five will be for Jammu and Kashmir and 12 for the Maoist-affected states, a senior Home Ministry official said.
Each of the battalions will comprise 1,100 recruits. It has been proposed that these battalions will be raised by recruiting local youths. In case of Naxal-hit states, 75 per cent vacancies will be filled up by youths from the 27 worst-affected districts.
In case of Jammu and Kashmir, the recruitment process will concentrate on insurgency prone areas. The cost of raising each of the battalion will be around Rs 61 crore and 75 per cent of it will be provided by the central government.
"This cost is much lower than raising of a paramilitary battalion which costs around Rs 160 crore," the official said.
Personnel of India Reserve Battalion are normally deployed in their respective states but they can be deployed in other states too if there is a requirement.
At present, there are 144 India Reserve Battalions in various states. In addition, the Centre has recently approved raising eight additional IR Battalions -- four each for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.