Border confrontations and unprovoked military actions spiraling into a larger conflict can’t be discounted, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat said today, according to news agency PTI, amid Chinese aggression in Ladakh. General Rawat also said the situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the de facto border between India and China in eastern Ladakh, remains tense.
He said China’s People’s Liberation Army was facing “unanticipated consequences” for its misadventure in Ladakh because of firm responses by Indian forces. “Our posturing is unambiguous; we will not accept any shift in the Line of Actual Control,” PTI quoted the Chief of Defence Staff as saying at a webinar organized by the National Defence College.
India and China have held seven rounds of military talks to resolve the standoff in Ladakh that started in May and saw unprecedented escalation in June when 20 Indian soldiers died for the country in a physical clash with Chinese troops at Galwan Valley.
In August, Chinese soldiers tried to close in on Indian troops who had reclaimed heights at Pangong Tso, and there was firing in the air for the first time in decades.
“As India grows in stature, security challenges will rise proportionately. We must move out of the constant threat of sanctions or dependency on individual nations for our military requirements and invest in building long-term indigenous capability for strategic independence and application of decisive military power to squarely meet present and emerging challenges,” said General Rawat.
Referring to Pakistan, he said the “new Indian template to deal with terror” had injected uncertainty in the country, which was continuing its proxy war through cross-border terror. “Unabated proxy war in Jammu and Kashmir unleashed by Pakistan, accompanied by vicious anti-India rhetoric, have taken India-Pakistan ties to a new low,” he said.