India-China faceoff in Tawang; LAC skirmish new normal

Spread the love

By Manish Anand

New Delhi, December 12: China continues to provoke India across the line of actual control with aggressive mobilization of the People’s Liberation of Army (PLA). The fresh skirmish, which took place in the Tawang sector of Arunchal Pradesh, adds another flash point in the bilateral relations between India and China.

Multiple media reports quoted the sources in the Army that a minor skirmish took place in the Tawang sector on December 9 in an area which is contested by both the sides and patrolled by them also. The reports also claimed about 20 Indian armed personnel sustained injuries, while a higher number was reported on the Chinese side.

As is the practice now the PLA is coming to the LAC in a large number, 600 was at the spot of the fresh skirmish, which is a major confrontation after the Galwan shown of strength two years ago, China is clearly charting the course to keep the LAC volatile to deflect attention from the resolution of the border issue between the two country. India’s foreign minister S Jaishankar had told Parliament last week that India and China cannot have normal relations until the LAC remains tense.

The government is likely to make a statement in both Houses of Parliament. Opposition is slated to raise the issue in Parliament on Tuesday. Congress has been stepping up attack on the Narendra Modi government for the LAC standoff with China. Congress has also launched an attack on the Modi government after Prime Minister had walked to China’s President Xi Jinping to shake hands during the gala dinner of the G20 Summit in Bali, Indonesia last month.

Former Union Minister and senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor sought to give a spin to the Tawang skirmish, saying that this was aimed to pre-empt the possibility of the next Dalai Lama being named from the birthplace of the sixth spiritual head of the Tibetan Buddhists. “I’ve long argued that China has designs on Tawang, since they want to pre-empt the possibility of a future Dalai Lama being identified at the birthplace of the 6thDL. Proud of our soldiers for standing up to the PLA,” tweeted Tharoor.

The Tawang skirmish has also come a week after India and the US wrapped up their joint high altitude military exercise in Auli, Uttarakhand in an area which is just about 100 kms away from the LAC with China. Beijing had strongly objected to the joint exercise even while India had said that China has no business talking about the exercise between two friendly countries. The skirmish has also come in the wake of the eastern Ladakh standoff showing no signs of improvement as military commander talks have become irrelevant amid Beijing clearly seeking to pick up quarrel with India amid fast changing global order.

It is also significant that the Tawang skirmish has come within a fortnight of Modi visiting Arunachal Pradesh to inaugurate a new airport in the state. China has been as part of a routine objecting to the high level visits to Arunachal Pradesh. The military strategists are of the view that China will continue to escalate friction across the LAC in multiple sectors to test India’s patience, while also ramping up the infrastructure facilities on their side.

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *