Ladakh Standoff: Rajnath Singh holds meet with CDS Gen Rawat, three service chiefs, discusses situation along LAC
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday held a meeting with Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat and all the three service chiefs and reviewed the the current situation in Ladakh, reported news agency ANI.
This was the second meeting that was held between the Defence Minister, CDS General Rawat, Army chief General Mukund Naravane, Air Force chief Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria and Navy chief Admiral Karambir Singh over the ongoing border standoff between India and China. The first meeting between the five was held on June 8.
According to a report by India Today, Rajnath Singh also discussed the latest assessments on-ground situation done after the two recent meetings of commanders of both sides with CDS General Rawat and the three service chiefs.
The meeting comes just days after the troops of Indian and Chinese Armies held talks to resolve the month-long border stand-off in Ladakh. Following the talks, the government had said that the two sides will continue the "military and diplomatic engagements" to resolve the situation and to "ensure peace and tranquillity" in the border areas.
On Thursday, the government also said that it is maintaining military and diplomatic engagements with China to peacefully resolve the standoff in Ladakh, adding that both sides agreed to work for an early resolution to the issue in sync with broader guidance provided by the leaders of the two countries for ensuring peace and tranquillity along the border areas.
Military sources, quoted by news agency PTI, have said that notwithstanding the ongoing talks, India has deployed more troops in almost all the sensitive areas along the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh, North Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh as part of its strategy to bolster military strength on par with China.
The sources also said both sides continued their eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation in Pangong Tso and several other areas in eastern Ladakh.
"A meeting was held between core commanders of India and China on June 6. This meeting was in continuation of our diplomatic and military engagement which both sides maintained in order to address the situation in areas along the India-China border," Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said.
Meanwhile, the sources also told PTI that the Chinese Army has been gradually ramping up its strategic reserves in its rear bases near the Line of Actual Control (LAC) by rushing in artillery guns, infantry combat vehicles and heavy military equipment.
The trigger for the face-off was China's stiff opposition to India laying a key road in the Finger area around the Pangong Tso Lake, besides construction of another road connecting the Darbuk-Shayok-Daulat Beg Oldie road in Galwan Valley.
The road in the Finger area in Pangong Tso is considered crucial for India to carry out patrol. India has already decided not to stall any border infrastructure projects in eastern Ladakh in view of Chinese protests.
The situation in the area deteriorated after around 250 Chinese and Indian soldiers were engaged in a violent face-off on May 5 and 6. The incident in Pangong Tso was followed by a similar incident in north Sikkim on May 9.
(With PTI inputs)
Posted By: Aalok Sensharma