NEW DELHI: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh held an important review meeting with the military brass even as the Line of Actual Control in eastern Ladakh did not witness any “aggressive action” on Friday, with the brigade commanders of India and China meeting to keep the channels of communication open.
A senior officer confirmed, “The minister met the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) and the three service chiefs to discuss the ongoing situation post the meetings in Russia between the defence and the foreign ministers of the two countries.”
National Security Advisor Ajit Doval was also present at the meeting where the five-point agreement reached on de-escalating tensions in eastern Ladakh deliberated upon, sources said.
The agenda for the meeting between the corps commanders of India and China, likely to take place early next week, was also discussed.
There have been a total of five such meetings so far since the standoff in Ladakh began.
At the meeting, General M M Naravane briefed about the combat readiness of the Army to deal with any eventualities and also elaborated on plans to keep the forces in the high-altitude region during harsh winter months.
The situation along the LAC was, meanwhile, remained calm.
“There was no aggressive action in the last 24 hours,” said a senior Army officer. The brigade commanders of both sides and the LAC commanders of the Southern Bank of Pangong Tso also held a meeting in the Chushul area.
“The meeting started at 11 and lasted for more than three hours. We will continue to talk as this keeps the channel of communication open and helps in controlling the situation,” said the Army officer.
Communication over the hotlines also continued. Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat appeared before the parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence.
While the agenda for the meeting was listed as ‘provision and monitoring of the quality of ration and livery items to the Defence forces, especially in border areas’, Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar had said earlier in the day that he would ask for a presentation on the situation at LAC in Ladakh.