UDHAMPUR (J&K): Two years after the Galwan clash, the situation along the Line of Actual Control in eastern Ladakh is stable and India is negotiating from a position of strength, said Lieutenant General Upendra Dwivedi who heads the Northern Army Command. “We will ensure that 2020 does not recur.”
Indian and Chinese troops had a bloody clash in May 2020 that resulted in the death of 20 Indian soldiers. An unspecified number of Chinese troops – more than 40 as per various accounts –also died in the violent skirmish.
“The force as well as equipment deployment is calibrated in nature and we will make sure that any kind of misadventure by the adversary does not take place again,” said Lt Gen Dwivedi. “Things have changed… we also have the strategic patience and we are also ready to wait out,” said Lt Gen Dwivedi.
To sort out the “perceptional difference,” trust has to be built which the Chinese broke in 2020, he pointed out. “The situation as of today is stable but we are in a state of heightened alert,” he said. The two sides have stepped up communication between lower-level troops to ensure “there is no irritant that could escalate to a violent situation,” said the top Indian Army officer.
“We have regular hotline exchanges and have stopped ‘body push.’ No physical contact is being ensured. In case of an irritant, we immediately call for talks and at the battalion and brigade levels. We sit together and come to an amicable solution,” Lieutenant General Dwivedi said on the sidelines of the North Tech Symposium being organized after a gap of two years.
The Indian Army’s Northern Command is the most operationally active command handling both Line of Control with Pakistan and LAC with China. It is also involved in the counter insurgency and counter terrorism operations.
About the LoC with Pakistan, the Commander said that the drone is a great technology, but Pakistan was using it for the wrong purpose. “Weapons have been dropped along the LoC and international border. Our effort is to keep up surveillance and capture or shoot down any drone within Indian territory. The Army Commander also affirmed American weapons reaching Kashmir.
Hizbul commander, two others gunned down
SRINAGAR: Three Hizbul Mujahideen militants, including the oldest active commander, were killed in an encounter at Anantnag in Jammu and Kashmir on Friday. This was after the interrogation of a Hizb militant who was held during a search operation at Kokernag area on Thursday evening. Later, security forces gunned down Hizb commander Mohammad Ashraf Khan alias Ashraf Molvi alias Mansoor ul Haq was killed with two other militants. Ashraf figured among the list of most wanted militants since 2013.