India-China standoff: How the situation suddenly aggravated at LAC


Chinese troops have killed three Indian soldiers, including the Commanding Officer of a battalion at Galwan valley in a violent face-off on Monday night, heightening tensions on the border to such levels since 1975, when four Assam Rifles troopers had been ambushed.

This comes when defence personnel from both sides have been engaged in talks to de-escalate a stand-off between the two sides in eastern Ladakh that have been building over the past one-and-a-half-months.

Tension between the two countries began in late April. Several rounds of talks failed to end the standoff, that began with a violent confrontation between rival patrols on May 5-6 near Pangong Tso that left scores of soldiers from both sides injured.

Here’s how the stand-off at LAC has played out so far:

May 5: Scuffles at Pangong Tso and at Naku La in North Sikkim results in significant injuries due to aggression on both sides.

May 6: Objecting to a road being constructed by India, Chinese troops close in on Finger 2 of Pangong Tso and block movement forward. After the scuffle on May 5, both sides move in additional troops.

May 12: Chinese military helicopters are seen flying close to Line of Actual Control, after which a fleet of Su-30 fighters of the Indian Air Force are sent to carry our sorties. Additional troops rushed to the site.

May 23: Army Chief General Manoj Naravane visits the Leh-based 14 Corps headquarters to review the situation.

May 26: India’s top military brass meets PM Modi. The meeting came hours after the top four generals briefed Defence Minister Rajnath Singh about the situation in Pangong Tso lake, Galwan Valley, Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldi where the Indian and Chinese troops were engaged in aggressive posturing for the last 20 days.

May 27: Chinese President Xi Jinping orders the military to scale up the battle preparedness, visualising worst-case scenarios and asked them to resolutely defend the country’s sovereignty.

June 1: Beijing says overall situation along the China-India border is stable and controllable. The Chinese keepsa fleet of around 10-12 fighter aircraft stationed near Easter Ladakh and carry out flying activity close to Indian territory.

June 2: Major general-rank officers hold deliberations. Reports suggested the meeting remained “inconclusive”.

June 6: In an attempt to diffuse the situation, Indian military delegation headed by the commander of Leh-based 14 Corp Lieutenant General Harinder Singh and China’s Major General Liu Lin, Commander of South Xinjiang Military Region hold talks.

June 13: Army Chief General Naravane said the situation along the borders is under control. “I would like to assure everyone that the entire situation along our borders with China is under control. We are having a series of talks which started with corps commander level talks which was followed up with meetings at the local level between commanders of equivalent ranks,” he said.

June 15: An Indian army officer and two soldiers are killed in a “violent face-off” with Chinese soldiers at Galwan Valley. The Army releases a statement saying, “Casualties suffered on both sides” in violent face-off during de-escalation process with China.”

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