Leh airbase: Ladakh face-off: MiG-29, Apache helicopters deployed at Leh airbase

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NEW DELHI: India is rapidly building up military strength in Ladakh after the clash at Galwan valley on Monday night, with the latest Apache attack choppers and upgraded MiG-29 fighter jets deployed at the Leh airbase and additional troops rushed to eastern Ladakh.

Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria is currently in Leh, overlooking preparations of the IAF that has played a central role by transporting men and supplies to eastern Ladakh and conducting reconnaissance and air dominance patrols. Apache helicopters are designed to carry out offensive missions at high altitude locations and the Chinese have no match for them. Its deployment in the sector, hence, is a big boost to the military.

The helicopters are particularly effective against armoured formations like tanks and infantry vehicles — deployed in strength by the Chinese side along LAC in Eastern Ladakh — and can be a game changer with the abilities to quickly intervene at any location.

In addition, the M-777 ultra-light howitzers, procured specially for mountain warfare, have been airlifted ahead to give Indian ground forces an edge. The accurate artillery guns are able to quickly deploy in difficult terrain and have no known Chinese equivalent.

Sources said that frontline fighter jets, including Su-30 MKIs, Mirage 2000s and MiG-29 UPGs, have been moved from their home bases to airfields located within a short flying distance of the LAC. Besides Leh, the air force has at least four bases within a short interdiction time from the current area of conflict.

On the ground, reports have emerged that thousands of troops from locations all over the country are being moved into the Ladakh region as border tensions remain high. These include missile units, artillery groups and armoured regiments to supplement the two division level strength already built up in eastern Ladakh.





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