Stone pelting in east-Ladakh: Indian, Chinese troops pelt stones at each other

New Delhi: According to a report in the Tribune India, a newspaper based in India, troops of the two sides (India and China) clashed on Tuesday, with both pelting stones and hitting each other. Men on both sides were injured.

This was the first such incident in several years.

“Sources confirmed that the incident occurred when land-based patrols of both sides came face to face north of the Pangong Tso (lake) in eastern Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday,” the report said.

It is an area claimed by both countries and is one of the spots where the two countries fought pitched battles during the 1962 war.

For more than a month now, the two countries (China and India) have been involved in a stand-off along a part of their 3,500 kilometres shared border. Since both the countries are populous and have very robust economies, and have fought a war over border disputes in 1962, the stand-off has attracted global media attention.

Both India and China have rushed more troops to the border as the divide between the two neighbouring countries is turning out to be one of the longest since the India-China war of 1962.

The Pangong Tso, a 135 km-wide glacial-melt lake, straddles both countries. It has boat patrols from either side. The land patrols are different from these.

The spurs of the mountains forming the northern bank of the lake are militarily termed as ‘fingers’. On a west-to-east axis, India claims territory till ‘Finger 8’, but is in physical control till ‘Finger 4’. The aerial distance between the two ‘fingers’ is about 15 km. The land north of these mountains is disputed.

Land patrols of both sides often come face to face and a drill is followed to disengage. This includes unfurling of a banner, asking each other to withdraw. This is the first step.

New Delhi has asked for a report as the pelting of stones is considered a serious matter. It is not clear who started the stone pelting or how it was triggered.

A flag meeting could be held between brigade commanders of either side at the Spanggur Gap, the designated meeting point south of the Pangong Tso.

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