CDS Gen Bipin Rawat in Ladakh to review overall security situation amid border standoff with China


PTI, Jan 11, 2021, 7:03 PM IST

Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat is on a visit to Ladakh to review the country’s overall military preparedness as thousands of Indian and Chinese troops remained deployed in a high state of combat readiness in various mountainous locations in the region amid the eight-month-long border standoff. Official sources said on Monday that Gen Rawat will be briefed by Lt Gen PGK Menon, the commander of the Leh-based 14 Corps, popularly known as Fire and Fury Corps, and other senior military officials on the dynamic security matrix in eastern Ladakh.

The visit of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) to Ladakh comes days after he toured several key installations including “forward most air maintained” posts in Dibang Valley, Lohit sector and Subansiri valley near the Line of Actual Control(LAC) in Arunachal Pradesh. “The CDS will review the overall security scenario in the eastern Ladakh region,” said a source.

Gen Rawat is also expected to travel to Kashmir from Ladakh on Tuesday. The Army and the Indian Air Force(IAF) have been maintaining a high state of operational readiness along the nearly 3,500-km LAC with China in view of the military standoff in eastern Ladakh.

Nearly 50,000 troops of the Indian Army are deployed in various locations in eastern Ladakh as multiple rounds of military and diplomatic talks between the two sides have not yielded any concrete outcome to resolve the faceoff. China has also deployed an equal number of troops, according to officials. The eighth and last round of military talks had taken place on November 6 during which India and China broadly discussed disengagement of troops from specific friction points.

The CDS has been part of the top military brass framing strategies to enhance India’s military prowess in view of the Sino-India standoff. Last month, Chief of Army Staff Gen MM Naravane had visited eastern Ladakh to review the ground situation in the region that is also experiencing harsh winter.

The standoff erupted on May 5 last year following violent clashes between the troops of the Indian Army and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army(PLA) in the Pangong lake area. The incident in Pangong Tso was followed by a similar incident in north Sikkim on May 9.

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