NEW DELHI: India has decided to increase its strength along 3,488-km of Line of Actual control LAC—the de facto border with China—as Beijing continues its troop build-up on the other side. Not just the army, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) is also shoring up its posts with men and material, reports NDTV.
The decision to induct more ITBP companies to support the army was taken on Saturday after Lt General Paramjit Singh, the Director General Military Operations, and ITBP chief SS Deswal visited Leh.“We sent some troops to Ladakh before the incident and now we are enhancing the numbers,” a senior government official said.
According to him, the decision was taken to place a company instead of a platoon to assist army at all patrolling points. In a platoon there are 30 jawans normally, while a company has around 100 jawans.
Reports reaching National Security Council, meanwhile, indicate that the situation at the three flash points—Galwan Valley, Hot Springs and Pangong Lake—is still tense despite talks between both sides on Monday.
India wants status quo to be restored as it was on April 30, 2020. In talks in Moldo, both sides asserted their point of view. Sources indicate that both sides want thinning of troops at Patrol Points 14, 15 and 17 at Galwan and Gogra.
Sources say, patrolling point 14 (Galwan), patrolling point 15 (Kongka La) and patrolling point 17 (Hot Springs) may take weeks of intensive deliberations. Satellite images shown on NDTV yesterday show fresh Chinese construction on an embankment near Patrol Point 14 in Galwan.
On Patrolling Point 15 also, they have put up large tents and have been camping there for almost a month. At patrolling point 17, large troop mobilisation has been done from both sides.As per reports on Pangong Lake, Chinese troops have moved upto “Finger 4”—the name given to one of the eight cliffs jutting out of the Sirijap range—and had brought over 120 vehicles and dozen boats.
India has accused China of unilaterally altering the Line of Actual Control.
“The PLA came to their perceived point of LAC and has erected massive structures there so we are now further enhancing our capacities too in terms of men and infrastructure,” a senior bureaucrat said.
According to him, India is engaging China both militarily and diplomatically but forces on ground are being prepared for a long haul. “Dokalam took 73 days. This may also take a while longer and that’s why more troops are being sent there,” he added.