China Used Unorthodox Weapons: Defence Ministry on Ladakh Standoff
In its year-end review, the Ministry has talked about J&K and the government’s efforts to modernise defence forces.
The Defence Ministry, in a recently published report, has claimed that the Chinese army escalated the situation “by the utilisation of unorthodox weapons and amassing a large number of troops”, amid clashes in Eastern Ladakh.
“(The) Indian Army has maintained all protocols and agreements between the two countries while the PLA escalated the situation by the utilisation of unorthodox weapons and amassing a large number of troops.”Defence Ministry’s report
As reported by The Indian Express, this is the first time that the Ministry has made an official mention of the use of orthodox weapons by China during the military standoff with India.
Further, in its year-end review of 2020, the Defence Ministry has talked about other aspects of conflict in China, Jammu and Kashmir, the government’s efforts to modernise defence forces and berated Pakistan, among other things.
On India-China Clashes
Referring to the clashes that began in May, the Defence Ministry, according to PTI, said:
“Unilateral and provocative actions by the Chinese to change the status quo by force, in more than one area on the Line of Actual Control (LAC), were responded to in a firm and non-escalatory way, ensuring the sanctity of our claims in Eastern Ladakh.”
India and China have since been locked in an eight-month-long bitter standoff in eastern Ladakh, despite multiple diplomatic and military talks.
Talking about the 15 June incident, in which 20 Indian soldiers lost their lives, the Defence Ministry claimed that the Chinese also suffered “significant casualties”.
According to PTI, the Ministry stated that the Indian Army has firmly countered adversaries on the LAC and the Line of Control (LOC), and further informed:
“Advance Winter Stocking (AWS) and winter preparations for the enhanced strength have been completed and troops are well entrenched to counter any misadventure by Chinese forces. While the Indian Army is prepared for any eventuality, talks are also progressing to resolve the issue in an amicable manner.”
On Jammu and Kashmir
According to PTI, the report further said that a “whole of government” approach was put into place to combat the alleged “terror ecosystem” in Jammu and Kashmir. The Ministry also claimed that, owing to the unwavering efforts of the security forces, the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir has seen a “progressive improvement".
“On one hand, high level of alertness by troops along the Line of Control (LC) blunted Pakistan’s endeavours to infiltrate terrorists into the Valley, at the same time, high tempo of kinetic operations in the hinterland ensured denial of operational space to terrorist organisations.”Defence Ministry’s report
The report further said that attempts to smuggle arms, ammunition and contraband were also thwarted along the LOC.
Further, it reportedly claimed that the “residual terrorist strength in the Valley is now below 200”.
“Attempts to spread violence south of the Pir Panjal Range have been comprehensively defeated by proactive operations. All possible steps are being taken to provide a secure environment to the Awaam of Jammu and Kashmir.”Defence Ministry’s report
According to PTI, the Ministry, further, said that a significant reduction in protests had been seen in Jammu and Kashmir which has provided an opportunity to the people of the Union Territory to lead a peaceful life.
(With inputs from PTI and The Indian Express.)
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