Defence Minister Rajnath Singh held a meeting on Sunday with Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat and all three service chiefs on the border situation amid standoff with China in eastern Ladakh along Line of Actual Control (LAC), which led to the recent ‘violent’ clash, killing 20 Indian soldiers.
Singh reportedly suggested to the CDS and the three service chiefs to be “fully prepared” to take any unprecedented action as per the situation on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in view of the ongoing situation in Ladakh, in over half-hour discussion at his residence.
It is learnt that the Army has been advised by the Defence Minister to be very cautious during patrol duty and enhance strict vigil at the border with China, reported news agency IANS .
While the Navy and the Air force have been asked to keep proper observation on land and sea lanes.
As the meeting took place ahead of Singh’s visit to Russia scheduled for June 24, the Defence Minister also discussed some critical deals which are expected to be inked during his visit. There he will witness the Victory Day Military Parade being organised in Moscow on the 75th anniversary of the Russia victory in World War II.
A tri-service 75-member Indian military contingent has already reached Moscow to participate in the Victory Parade along with Russian contingent and other invited contingents. The marching contingent taking part in the Victory Day Parade is led by a major rank officer of the gallant Sikh Light Infantry Regiment. The Regiment had fought with valour in World War II and has a proud distinction of earning four battle honours and two military crosses among other gallantry awards.
The visit of the Defence Minister will strengthen the longstanding special and privileged strategic partnership between India and Russia.
The meeting was held a day after India’s strong rejection of China’s claim of sovereignty over Galwan Valley. After Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said that there are no foreign incursions into India, China claimed the Galwan Valley of Ladakh.
In an official statement released by China’s foreign ministry on the step-by-step account of the Galwan face-off where 20 Indian soldiers were killed, China’s foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian has said the Galwan valley is located on the Chinese side of the LAC in the west section of the China-India boundary.
“For many years, the Chinese border troops have been patrolling and on duty in this region,” Zhao had said.
The External Affairs Ministry had clarified that China’s claim over Galwan Valley was not in accordance with its own position in the past, noting that attempts of transgression by Chinese side were invariably met with appropriate response from the Indian troops.