This Article is From Oct 02, 2021

Chinese Troops Deployed In Considerable Numbers Across Ladakh: Army Chief

India-China Standoff: Hoping to achieve results on disengagement through constant dialogue, General Naravane said: "By and by all friction points will get resolved.

Eastern Ladakh Standoff: India and China have been locked in a stand-off for more than a year.

Ladakh/ New Delhi:

India expects to hold a 13th round of talks with China on the Ladakh standoff and disengagement of military forces next week, Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane said this morning while he added in the same breath that "there has been an increase in the deployment of Chinese troops", which has been a matter of concern. For the last six months, however, the situation has been "quite normal," he underlined.

"Chinese (troops) have deployed in considerable numbers all across Eastern Ladakh and Northern Front right up to our Eastern Command. Definitely there has been an increase in their deployment in the forward areas, which remains a matter of concern for us," he told news agency ANI.

"But we are monitoring all their developments. Based on whatever inputs we get we are carrying out matching developments in terms of infrastructure. At the moment, we are quite well poised to meet any eventuality," he said, adding he doubts "any aggression can be shown in any area".

On achieving disengagement through dialogue, General Naravane said: "By and by, all friction points will get resolved. I am of the firm opinion that we can resolve our differences through dialogue. I am hopeful we will be able to achieve results. We're hopeful of having the 13th round of talks in the second week of October and reaching a consensus on how disengagement will take place."

On Friday, the General took stock of operational preparedness in Eastern Ladakh.

An Army spokesperson said he visited several forward areas and was briefed on the current security situation. The Army said he also interacted with the troops and complimented them on their resoluteness and high morale.

The Army has deployed the first K9-Vajra self-propelled howitzer regiment in the Ladakh sector, along the Line of Actual Control, the de-facto border with China.

The gun can strike enemy targets at a distance of around 50 km.

"These guns can also work in high-altitude areas; field trials were extremely successful. We have now added an entire regiment, this will be really helpful," the Army Chief told ANI today.

India and China have been locked in a stand-off for more than a year.  Twenty Indian soldiers died in the line of duty amid clashes with Chinese troops last year in June.

(With inputs from ANI)