Indo-China border tensions refuse to be resolved, as around 40 soldiers of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) were seen patrolling the area along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) near Barahoti area in Uttarakhand, reports said on Wednesday. The Indian Army is reportedly on high alert after the development; China has increased patrolling in the area after a gap of over six months.
China claims Barahoti as its own territory. Meanwhile, Indian troops are already stationed there as India and China have been locked in a border standoff since last May. With this new development, India has reportedly deployed additional troops in the area. Stating that India’s operational preparedness is high, a source told India Today, “Chinese troops were constantly monitored in the area during their stay.”
An increase in Chinese activity was also spotted at its airbase near Barahoti where a large number of drones and helicopters have been operating, reports said. The Indian Air Force has also activated a few airbases in the area including the Chinyalisaur advanced landing ground where AN-32 aircraft and Chinook heavy-lift helicopters are operational to carry out troop transfer whenever required.
Tension is brewing in the central sector, which includes areas along the LAC in Uttarakhand, as India and China are yet to achieve complete military disengagement. Except for Pangong Tso, China has refused to withdraw troops from the remaining friction points. Recently, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and Central Army Commander Lt-General Y Dimri reviewed the security situation in the central sector.
India and China have been in a military standoff since last May when the two forces had faced off near the Pangong Tso lake. It took an ugly turn when 20 Indian soldiers were martyred in a deadly clash in Galwan Valley in mid-June 2020.
So far, 11 rounds of military corps commander-level talks have been held between India and China to achieve complete disengagement in the region. In a recent statement, the Indian Army had said that negotiations between both countries are still ongoing and the next round of talks will be held at an advanced date. However, no date has been announced yet.
China’s reported activities give the impression that differences between the two countries have not yet simmered. Recently, Chinese nationals along with PLA members had protested against the celebrations of the Dalai Lama’s birthday in India by displaying the Chinese flag. A fresh Indo-China clash was also reported earlier this month, however, the Indian Army dismissed it as “false and baseless.”