Report By: Nandika Chand | Last Updated June 22, 2020
After the June 15 violent face-off in the Galwan Valley, the Indian Army has been instructed to use force if the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) attack the Indian Patrol Post 14.
The decisive shift from the long-standing border management policy to largely maintain ‘peace and tranquility’ on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) gives the military commanders on the ground the leeway to undertake whatever action is required to foil any misadventure by the PLA.
Indian military commanders, on the condition of anonymity, said their positions are being beefed up in response to the PLA build-up in the Xinjiang and Tibet regions. They said air forces of both sides are keeping surveillance watch on each other. A senior Indian diplomat said the situation has cooled to a ‘little extent’ but de-escalation appears to be a long haul due to the position China has taken on the Galwan Valley. He said the two armies are not thinking in terms of disengagement.
A second virtual conference between Naveen Srivastava, MEA joint secretary in charge of China, and his counterpart in Beijing will be held to bring about a diplomatic resolution to the border crisis. A high-level politico-diplomatic intervention is required due to the continuing deadlock.
The June 15 face-off started over a Chinese tent that was constructed on Sunday (June 14) night, which was torn down by Indian troops. Chinese troops, on Monday (June 15) night retaliated with stones and bamboo sticks customised with nails attacked the unprepared Indian troops. The Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi urged India to strictly control its frontline troops and immediately stop all provocative actions. He said the Indian side must not misjudge the current situation and must not underestimate China’s firm will to safeguard territorial sovereignty.
However, India’s External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar said China’s actions were ‘pre-mediated and planned’. He said clashes would leave a serious impact on both countries bilateral relationship.