|Army at LAC has adequate special clothes, tent, weapons: Rajnath|
NEW DELHI, Sept 17: Special warm clothes, special tent for living and adequate arrangement of weapons and ammunition have been made for Indian Army soldiers to cope with the extreme weather conditions at the Line of Actual Control, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh informed the members of Rajya Sabha on Thursday as border tension continued with China.
"The spirits of our soldiers are high. They are capable of serving at forbidding altitudes with scarce oxygen and in extremely cold temperatures, something that they have effortlessly done over the last many years on Siachen and Kargil," the Defence Minister said.
He also said that the morale and motivation of Indian Armed Forces is very high, and the soldiers are committed to overcome any challenge that might come their way.
This time also, soldiers have chosen patience and courage over aggression. "Our soldiers are a living symbol of restraint, bravery and valour," he said.
The minister detailed the House about ongoing border tension.
Since April, India had noticed a build-up of troops and armaments by the Chinese side in the border areas adjacent to Eastern Ladakh.
In early May, the Chinese side had taken action to hinder the normal, traditional patrolling pattern of our troops in the Galwan Valley area, which resulted in a face-off.
Even as this situation was being addressed by the Ground Commanders as per the provisions of our bilateral agreements and protocol, in mid-May the Chinese side made several attempts to transgress the LAC in other parts of the Western Sector.
This included Kongka La, Gogra and North Bank of Pangong Lake. These attempts were detected early and consequently responded to appropriately by our armed forces.
"We made it clear to the Chinese side both through diplomatic and military channels that China was, by such actions, attempting to unilaterally alter the status quo. It was categorically conveyed that this was unacceptable," the minister said.
Given the growing friction along the LAC, the Senior Commanders of the two sides in a meeting on June 6, 2020 agreed on a process of disengagement that involved reciprocal actions. Both sides also agreed to respect and abide by the LAC and not undertake any activity to alter the status quo.
However, in violation of this the Chinese side precipitated a violent face off on June 15 at Galwan in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed. "Our brave soldiers laid down their lives and also inflicted costs including casualties on the Chinese side," he said. - IANS