‘Standoff in Ladakh is for long haul, no de-escalation in sight’

Counting Recent Developments: The Clouds of Conflict are Still not Over Between India and China

The deployment of the Indian and the Chinese troops at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh is unlikely to ease in the near future as there is no pressure on the Chinese to disengage, believe defence experts.

There are around 50,000 troops with arms and equipment, including the armoured vehicle, artillery guns and missiles, deployed along the LAC in a tense standoff which even saw deadly clashes. Lt Gen DS Hooda (Retd) says, “I don’t see an early resolution to the standoff because the kind of messaging from the Chinese side doesn’t seem to indicate that they are in hurry.” General Hooda commanded the Northern Command under which the 14 Corps looking after the Eastern Ladakh functions.

Going by the official statements, both sides have fallen back to usual statements since the disengagement of troops from both sides completed from the North and South Banks of Pangong Tso Lake. The disengagement also included the heights of Kailash Ranges which were occupied by the Indian Army on June 27, 2020, thus acquiring advantageous positions opposite the Moldo Garrison of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army.

Till now, 11 rounds of talks between the Corps Commanders of India and China have taken place. Maj Gen SB Asthana (Retd.), defence analyst, says, “Traditionally these months of the year is the campaigning season and, in this season, buildup normally takes place which is not going to fade away. No side will take a chance.”

The other thing is that the terrain for the Chinese is conducive as the plateau is on their side. Lt Gen Vinod Bhatia (Retd.) said, “It’s a game of patience and going to be a long haul. We have done well at tactical, operational, strategic level so far. We will also not be escalating but won’t put our guards down.”

Also read: Counting Recent Developments: The Clouds of Conflict are Still not Over Between India and China


  • Shantanu K. Bansal

    Founder of IADN. He has more than 10 years of experience in research and analysis. An award winning researcher, he writes for the leading defence and security journals, think-tanks and in-service publications. He is a senior consultant at the Indian Army Training Command (ARTRAC), Shimla. Contact him at: Shantanukbansal2@gmail.com

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