As many as 100 troops of China’s People’s Liberation Army intruded into Indian territory in Uttarakhand’s Barahoti on August 30, sources said on Tuesday. The troops came on horses and stayed for “three hours”.
Sources further said that the Chinese army destroyed foot bridge, but there was no faceoff with Indian forces. “By the time, the Army and ITBP troops came, the PLA soldiers had left,” sources added. Amid the reports, chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami has said that the government has “no such information.”
This comes even as military confrontation in eastern Ladakh continues into 17 months. A Times of India report had quoted their sources as saying that the latest surveillance and intelligence reports show the People’s Liberation Army has constructed “new modular container-based accommodations” for its soldiers in “at least eight more forward locations” along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) opposite eastern Ladakh.
Both India and China continue to maintain around 50,000 soldiers each, backed by howitzers, tanks and surface-to-air missile systems in the “immediate depth areas” along the LAC in eastern Ladakh.
Amidst the uneasy calm, both armies have been regularly rotating their troops due to the harsh terrain and oxygen deprivation in the high-altitude area, while deploying aircraft and drones to keep tabs on each other.
The border standoff between the Indian and Chinese armies erupted in May last year following a violent clash in the Pangong lake area and both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.
As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the withdrawal of troops and weapons from the north and south banks of the Pangong lake in February.
A similar disengagement process was carried out in the Gogra area last month, in a significant forward movement towards the restoration of peace and tranquillity in the region.