Free Press Journal

Spike in Chinese troop incursions, but sanctity of LAC being maintained: Army chief


New Delhi: Army Chief Gen Bikram Singh today said there was a “spike” in incursions by Chinese troops in some sectors along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), but noted that the sanctity of the temporary boundary was being maintained.

Addressing the annual Army Day press conference, Singh said that there was “inadequacy” in terms of infrastructure along the boundary with China but plans were afoot to improve the situation.

“Let me be frank, somehow two incidents got hyped up last year. Even Indian soldiers are patrolling up to our perceived LAC… A certain amount of spike has been seen in certain areas, but let me assure you that our patrols are also going in those areas,” Singh said, when asked about incursions by Chinese troops.

Last year, Chinese troops had pitched their tents in the Depsang area, 19km inside Indian territory, and left only after long parleys between the two sides.

They also apprehended Indian nationals near the Chumar area who were returned after several days’ detention.

Singh said that the recently-signed Border Defence Cooperation Agreement had helped improve cooperation between the troops of either side. The file for establishing a DGMO-level hotline has also been sent in this regard, he added.

Asked to comment on the perception that the Army was not giving a tough response to the Chinese troops, he said some of the incidents were hyped, leading to people thinking that our troops were not working.

As to whether the lack of infrastructure was hampering Army operations along LAC, he said, “There is inadequacy at the moment but there are plans afoot. Last year, we have the allocation of Rs 9,200 crore for infrastructure and a CCS note has been prepared for Rs 28,000 crore for the 12th and 13th defence plans.”