India to pull down shelters in Chumar

5/09/2013
India has to dismantle a temporary tin-shed shelter in the Chumar sector of south-east Ladakh in order to give a concession to the intruding Chinese troops to pull back from their camp site on Sunday in Depsang plains.
The shelter was set up 7-8 km in front of the last Indian camp near the Line of Actual Control (LAC). It was a shelter for Indian patrolling team after troops from People's Liberation Army and People's Armed Police Force crossed over to the Indian side and set up their tents near Raki Nalla, a dry riverbed 40 km south east of Daulat Beg Oldie airstrip in north-east Ladakh.

This post in Chumar was dismantled as a quid pro quo for compelling the Chinese troops to withdraw after three tense weeks of face-to-face situation and back channel diplomacy. This, however, does not mean any change in the patrolling pattern or any concession given to China, sources said.

Army officials confirmed Chinese troops went back to their side of the LAC by Sunday evening. But there are several theories on what prompted the incursion in the first place on April 15.Going by the army assessment, it was a tactical move on the part of the PLA as there was no attempt on the part of Chinese to bring in heavy vehicles and establish regular support links between the tents and PLA camps.

Close on the other side of the LAC are four Chinese border defence regiment posts two of which are at Chip-Chap (15 km from the LAC) and Sundo (40 km from the LAC).

This is not the first time that such an intrusion has happened. In 2010, a similar incident happened near Fukche (southern Ladkah), where Chinese stayed put for almost a month before going back to their positions, an army officer said.

Even though two mountain divisions are being raised in the North-East, a proposal to set up a Mountain Strike Corps is lying with the Union Finance Ministry. Army is also in need of light-weight howitzers and mountain-radars and sensors to augment its war-fighting capabilities against China.
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