As Indian troops are engaged in a tense standoff at the south bank of Pangong Tso (lake) for the last one week, a massive build-up had again begun in the Finger area of the north bank, a senior government official told The Hindu.
A meeting of ground commanders to solve the stalemate is planned later in the day as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has occupied the ridge lines and amassed troops on the north bank, where Fingers 4-8 are located.
The official said that there was a worrying concentration of troops on both sides, with China dominating the area.
The development comes a day before the foreign ministers of both countries are expected to meet in Moscow on the sidelines of the meeting of the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
As reported, China has ingressed about 8 km in the Finger area of the north bank. India has not been able to patrol beyond Finger 4 since the April last week when China amassed troops along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh. Earlier, Indian troops could patrol up to Finger 8.
Meetings yield no results
Several rounds of meetings at military and diplomatic levels have not yielded any results. China partially retreated to Finger 5 and as per the agreement, Indian troops were also pushed back to Finger 2.
“China is dominating the ridges in the Finger area of Pangong Tso for the past four months. Since last evening, it has rushed additional forces. We have had no option but to match the presence. The ground commanders will meet in the day,” said the official.
It is to be noted that till now no dispute was reported in the south bank and for the past one week the Indian Army is dominating the ridges and hills here. For the first time in 45 years, aerial shots were fired along the disputed LAC. The Indian Army stated that it was actually the Chinese troops that fired a few rounds in the air in the south bank on September 7.