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  India   All India  01 Apr 2018  India deploys more troops along border with China

India deploys more troops along border with China

PTI
Published : Apr 1, 2018, 2:07 am IST
Updated : Apr 1, 2018, 2:09 am IST

The Army has also deployed copters to carry out recces and has enhanced patrolling to maintain sanctity of the Line of Actual Control.

Indian Army personnel carry out drills at Kibithu, close to the China border, in Anjaw district of Arunachal Pradesh. (Photo: PTI)
 Indian Army personnel carry out drills at Kibithu, close to the China border, in Anjaw district of Arunachal Pradesh. (Photo: PTI)

Kibithu (Arunachal Pradesh): To counter China’s rising assertiveness along the border in the Tibetan region in Arunachal sector, India has deployed more troops and significantly increased patrolling in Dibang, Dau-Delai and Lohit valleys.

Military officials said India is also strengthening its surveillance mechanism to keep an eye on Chinese activities along the borders in the strategically sensitive Tibetan region and has even been regularly deploying choppers to carry out recces.

India’s focus on dominating the treacherous terrains, which include snow-clad mountains at an altitude of over 17,000 feet, and river passes, are part of a strategy to counter China’s aggressive behaviour in the border areas developed after the Doklam face-off, the most tense military confrontations between the two countries in decades.

Indian and Chinese troops were locked in a 73-day standoff in Doklam last year after India stopped Chinese Army from constructing a road in the disputed area. The face-off began on June 16 and ended on August 28, 2017.

“Post Doklam, we have increased our activities manifold. We are fully prepared to deal with any challenge,” said an Army officer posted in Kibithu, the eastern most village on India’s border with China’s Tibetan region.

The official said the Army has been enhancing its Long Range Patrols (LRPs) where troops in small groups go for patrols for 15-30 days as part of an overall approach to maintain the sanctity of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the de-facto border between India and China.

“We have increased our deployment of troops while focusing on all the strategically important areas, including a tri-junction among India, China and Myanmar,” said the official who did not wish to be quoted as he is not authorised to speak to the media.

The official added that China has been ramping up its infrastructure development along India’s border, particularly in the Tibetan region, and India too needs to enhance its road network for quick movements of troops.

The Army uses a foot suspension bridge to carry its military supplies to its Kibithu post, considered very important from operational point of view, as the only road connecting the East bank of Lohit river with West bank remains closed due to landslides for most part of the year.

However, a senior official of the Border Roads Organisation said a number of roads, including one to connect the Dibang Valley with Lohit Valley, have been finalised and they will improve inter-valley connectivity in Arunachal.

China has been laying new roads and improving its overall infrastructure along the nearly 4,000 km long border with India. Earlier this month, defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said China has undertaken construction of helipads, sentry posts and trenches for its Army personnel near Doklam.

Sources said China has kept its troops in north Doklam and is significantly ramping up its infrastructure in the disputed area. In January, Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat had said the time had come for India to shift its focus from borders with Pakistan to the frontier with China, indicating the seriousness of the situation.

Tags: indian troops, nirmala sitharaman, doklam standoff
Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi