Indian Army to maintain current strength in Ladakh during winter

TNN Bureau. Updated: 8/2/2020 10:53:18 AM Front Page

New Delhi: The Indian Army is preparing to maintain its current strength of troops, tanks and other weaponry in all key areas in eastern Ladakh in the harsh winter months as a resolution to the border row with China in the mountainous region shows no signs of early resolution, people familiar with the developments said on Saturday.
They said the Indian Air Force(IAF) will also remain on high alert in the forward air bases along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) while the Navy will maintain its aggressive deployment in the Indian Ocean Region(IOR) to keep up pressure on China.
The Indian Army is making elaborate preparations for the long haul in eastern Ladakh even as it awaits confirmation from the Chinese military for the fifth round of military talks which was earlier expected to take place this week, they said.
They said the top military and strategic brass reviewed the overall situation along the LAC in eastern Ladakh and elsewhere on Saturday, adding Army chief Gen MM Naravane has been regularly updating Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on matters relating to operational preparedness.
Government sources said maintaining the current level of troops and weaponry in the high-altitude region will require extensive preparations as the temperature drops beyond minus 20 degrees Celsius in the region in peak winter months.
“We are preparing to maintain the current strength. That is the plan as of now based on the assessment of the current scenario,” said a source.
Sources said the government has set the ball rolling in procurement of high-altitude clothing and other required equipment for its soldiers posted in the region.
They said the armies of the two countries are now expected to hold the next round of Corps commander-level talks next week to thrash out modalities to take forward the disengagement process from the Finger points at Pangong Tso.
The Chinese military has pulled back from Galwan Valley and certain other friction points but the withdrawal of troops has not moved forward from the Finger areas in Pangong Tso as demanded by India,

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