NEW DELHI: Even as India and China continue to discuss ways to reduce tensions in Eastern Ladakh, it is emerging that the Chinese Army has deployed its troops all along the over 4,000 kilometre-long Line of Actual Control after which India has also rushed its fighting formations to forward locations in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.
India and China have been engaged in one of the biggest disputes over territory in several years after the Chinese military started building up along the Line of Actual Control in May first week along the Ladakh sector and Sikkim where they came to the Naku La area and had a face-off with the Indian troops there.
“The Chinese military has done military build-up not just in Ladakh but also in other sectors including Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh wherever it shares borders with us. The build-up includes troops and heavy weaponry which are deployed in rear positions,” government sources told ANI here.
To avoid any possibility of any misadventure by the Chinese, we have rushed in our fighting formations to forward locations in all these sectors, the sources said.
The reserve brigades of a Corps with an area of responsibility including Himachal Pradesh have gone up to the Ladakh sector to provide backup and cushion to the 3 Infantry Division based in Karu there. Additional fighting formations have also been moved forward to the border locations in Himachal Pradesh where Chinese choppers had shown up in April.
In Uttarakhand also, additional troops have been deployed in the Harsil-Barahoti-Nelang Valley and other sectors as Chinese choppers had come there also before the build-up started and have been seen carrying out foot patrols.
In the Eastern sector starting from the Chicken’s neck corridor, the training brigades of the Corps formations including the Sukna-based 33 Corps and Tezpur-based 4 Corps have been deployed on the front locations and a Brigade of the 17 Mountain Strike Corps is also ready for deployment, the sources said.
The Indian side has also rushed in its new ultra-light howitzers and other heavy weaponry to the forward locations for countering this build up on the other side by China.
When the Chinese build-up started, their choppers had started unusual activity at multiple locations including the Ladakh sector where they came right above the new bridge being built by the Indian Army to connect the all-important Durbuk-Shyok-DaulatBegOldie road with the Patrolling Point 14 in the Galwan area. The chopper had flown close to the Indian territory in Himachal Pradesh’s Kinnaur district and Barahoti in Uttarakhand in an apparent bid to confuse the Indian side about their intentions all along the LAC.
Along the Line of Control in the Ladakh sector only, the Chinese side has deployed over 10,000 troops and heavy weaponry including tanks and long-range artillery guns and India wants that they should de-induct troops from the rear positions before, for the tensions to really end along the LAC.
India, at present, is talking to the Chinese military leadership for resolving the dispute at three sites including the Galwan area, Patrolling Point 15 (114 Brigade area) and Patrolling Point 17 (Hot Springs) at multiple levels from battalion commanders to the Corps Commander.