On Tuesday, the Indian Army said in a statement that three members, including two soldiers and an officer had lost their lives.
An official statement from the Indian Army stated: “During the de-escalation process underway in the Galwan Valley, a violent face-off took place yesterday night with casualties. The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers. Senior officers meeting at the clash site.”
A later statement added that there were ‘casualties on both sides’.
The incident took place in the Galwan River Valley, where India and China were holding talks for ‘de-escalation’.
According to a report in Business Standard by veteran defence journalist Ajai Shukla, China was hellbent on holding on to the disputed territory in the crucial Galwan River Valley.
He wrote: “So determined is the PLA to hold on to the crucial Galwan River Valley that it held talks with the Indian military a full 3.5 kilometres inside Indian-claimed territory, well west of the LAC. With the mountain tops on either side of the Galwan River occupied by the Chinese, the PLA is dominating not just the Galwan River, but – at its junction with the Shyok River – the crucial Darbuk-Shyok-Daulat Beg Oldi (DSDBO) highway that connects the army’s so-called Sub-Sector North (SSN) with the rest of Ladakh.”
When was the last time India clashed with China?
The last time India and China clashed was in the year 1975 when four Assam Rifles jawans were ambushed at Tulung La in Arunachal Pradesh.
According to a report in The Hindu, Nirupama Rao, former Foreign Secretary and Ambassador to China said it was an ‘ambush, plain and simple, and four of ours lost their lives’.
While New Delhi said that the Chinese had crossed the LAC and ambushed the patrol, Beijing claimed Indians had crossed and fired at a Chinese post.
The report notes that India ‘recovered their bodies a week later’.
Before that, the last shot was fired in 1967, when India got the better of China in Sikkim when 80 Indian soldiers and around 400 Chinese soldiers were killed.