Army Chief General Manoj Pande on Thursday said there has been a ‘slight increase’ in the number of Chinese troops at the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
“There is a slight increase in the number of troops [by China] opposite our Eastern command. We are keeping a close watch on the movements,” General Manoj Pande said during a press conference on the sidelines of an event to mark the annual Army Day in the national capital on Thursday.
General Pande, however, said that the situation along the northern borders with China is under control but still remains ‘unpredictable’. Five of the seven thorny issues between the two armed forces have been presented on the table, he added.
“Though unpredictable, the situation at the northern borders is stable and under control. We have been able to resolve five of the seven issues on the table in the talk as our preparedness is of very high level and we have enough reserves to deal with any contingency,” Army Chief had said.
He also stressed on the need to ‘remain alert’, saying the ceasefire has held well on the Pakistan border but the neighbour’s support to terror infrastructure and terror groups was still persistent.
Detailing the welfare projects of the Army in the last five years, General Pande said, “The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has built roads spanning 2,100 km along our northern borders and 7,450-metre bridges in the last five years.”
He further said some of the work at the frontier highway in Arunachal Pradesh is currently underway.
“Habitats for the deployment 500 tanks and 400 guns have been created in the Eastern Ladakh sector by the Army. Habitats for 55,000 troops have also been created,” he added.
The Army chief said peace has returned to most of the states in the Northeast.
Speaking on Army Day, which is marked on January 15, every year, General Pande said they are fully aligned with the future national vision and have “decided to undertake transformation”.
“This Army Day is special as it is also the 75th year of India’s Independence. We are also fully aligned with the future national vision. We have decided to undertake a transformation,” he said.
General Pande said women officers might be commissioned soon into the Indian Army’s Corps of Artillery, as a proposal to that effect has been forwarded to the government for its assent.
“We also have the Army Martial Arts Routine which will help in dealing with combat situations. It is an amalgamation of different martial arts in the country,” he added.
Without naming China, the Army Chief further said they have been able to prevent all attempts to change the status quo (on the LAC) in a robust manner.
“In a firm and resolute manner with our soldiers deployed along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), we have been able to prevent any attempts by (the) adversary to unilaterally change the status quo in a robust manner,” General Pande said. (ANI)
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