19th January 2021

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Defence minister statement on LAC

China has mobilized large numbers of troops and weapons along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), as well as in “deep areas,” Defense Minister Rajnath Singh told Lok Sabha on Tuesday. He noted that there were several areas of friction in eastern Ladakh, including Gogra, Kongka La and the northern and southern shores of Pangong Tso (lake).

 “In response, our armed forces have carried out appropriate counter-deployments to these areas to ensure that India’s security interests are fully protected. We have made it clear to the Chinese side, both through diplomatic and military channels, that China, through such actions, is trying to unilaterally change the status quo. This was categorically expressed as unacceptable, ”

Singh said.
  • During the violent clash in Galwan on June 15, he claimed that Indian troops inflicted heavy losses on the Chinese side in the incident that claimed the lives of 20 Indian soldiers.
  • The nature of the current confrontation with China was different “both in terms of the size of the troops involved and the number of sticking points,” he said.
  • After Singh’s statement, Congress called a strike because President Om Birla did not allow them to ask questions.
  • Singh said the buildup of Chinese troops went against the 1993 and 1996 accords Respect and strict observance of the Royal Line of Control (ALC) was the basis of peace and quiet in border areas and this was explicitly recognized in the agreements, he noted.
  • The Chinese actions of June 15 in Galwan and the attempts to change the status quo of the south shore of the lake on August 29 and 30 “reflect a contempt for our various bilateral agreements,” he said.
  • “Although our armed forces comply scrupulously, it has not been delivered by the Chinese side,” he said.

Movement since April

Since April, an accumulation of troops and weapons by adjacent China east of Ladakh has been noted. In early May, the Chinese side took steps to hamper the normal and traditional patrolling pattern of Indian troops in the Galwan Valley area, sparking a clash, he said.

  • Regarding the meeting in Moscow with his Chinese counterpart, General Wei Fenghe, on September 4, Singh said he clarified that “although we want to resolve the problem peacefully and the Chinese side is working with us , there should also be no doubt about our determination to protect India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity ”.

Meeting in Moscow

Subsequently, on September 10, Foreign Minister Jai Shankar and his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, met in Moscow, where they agreed on a five-point plan to disconnect and reduce tensions .

  • In this regard, Singh said that if implemented “with sincerity and fidelity” by the Chinese side, it could lead to “complete disconnection and the reestablishment of peace and tranquility in border areas.”
  • In July, speaking to troops near Pangong Tso, Singh said that “progress in talks [with China] should lead to a resolution of the problem,” but “there was no guarantee to what extent the problem would be solved “.
  • In Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said the foreign ministers had reached an important consensus on “easing the situation” and that the two sides would keep in touch with each other through diplomatic and military channels.
  • “to promote the solution of the outstanding problems.” We hope that India will work with China to respect these important agreements and make concrete efforts to improve the situation on the ground, “Wang said.
  • Since the meeting, calm reigns in Ladakh, including on the northern and southern shores, tensions have risen over the past two weeks. The two sides have since agreed to hold another round of corps commanders-level talks to discuss disengagement, which one says military source, will likely take place this week.
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