- Chinese forces' conduct violates mutually agreed norms, says Centre
- Foreign Ministry said India has never attempted to change status quo
- Satellite images show Chinese structures' presence on both sides of LAC
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In its statement, the foreign ministry said: ''Unfortunately, we have experienced in the last many years obstruction to patrolling that often accompany efforts to unilaterally change the status quo... The deployment of large body of troops and changes in behavior has also been aggravated by unjustified and untenable claims. The recent shift in the Chinese position on the Galwan Valley is one example."
The foreign ministry said since early May, the Chinese side had been amassing a large contingent of troops and armaments along the LAC. "This is not in accordance with the provisions of our various bilateral agreements, especially the key 1993 Agreement... While there have been occasional departures in the past, the conduct of Chinese forces this year has been in complete disregard of all mutually agreed norms," the statement read.
High resolution satellite images from the Galwan river valley obtained by NDTV appear to show the presence of Chinese structures on both sides of the Line of Actual Control.
The images were obtained after India and China agreed to start the process of disengagement along the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh. The location is near Patrol Point 14, where 20 Indian soldiers were killed in action and more than 70 were injured on June 15.
On Patrolling Point 15, the Chinese have put up large tents and have been camping for almost a month. At patrolling point 17, large troop mobilisation has been done from both sides. On Pangong Lake, Chinese troops have moved upto "Finger 4" -- the name given to one of the eight cliffs jutting out of the Sirijap range -- and had brought over 120 vehicles and dozen boats.
Since April, Chinese intrusions were reported in the Fingers region on the banks of the Pangong Lake, the Hot Springs area (near the Army's post at Gogra), the Galwan Valley, and the Depsang Plains further to the north. After the June 15 clash, foreign minister S Jaishankar, in his talks with his Chinese counterpart, had suggested that China has to "reassess its actions and take corrective steps".
Army sources refused to comment on a report of a Chinese incursion in the Depsang plains region published in The Indian Express today. The intrusion is seen as another attempt by the Chinese to shift the LAC further west on the disputed boundary, close to the new airstrip of Daulat Beg Oldie that's crucial to India.
India has decided to increase its strength along 3,488-km of Line of Actual Control. The Indo-Tibetan Border Police is also shoring up its posts with men and material. It has been decided to place a company instead of a platoon to assist the army at all patrolling points. There are 30 jawans normally in a platoon, while a company has around 100 jawans.
At an all-party meeting on Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said "neither is anyone inside our territory nor are any of our posts captured" -- a comment that triggered controversy. The Congress repeatedly alleged that the Prime Minister has surrendered Indian Territory to the Chinese.
Alleging "mischievous interpretation of his words", the government said PM Modi's observations "pertained to the situation as a consequence of the bravery of our armed forces". The sacrifice of the soldiers foiled the Chinese attempts "to erect structures and also cleared the attempted transgression at this point of the LAC on that day... What is Indian territory is clear from the map of India. This government is strongly and resolutely committed to that," the government said.