The Indian Army on Sunday said that the contents of a video purportedly showing a clash between Indian and Chinese soldiers in eastern Ladakh were “not authenticated”, reported PTI. It added that the military commanders of the two countries have been in talks to address the differences over the boundary.
“It has been brought to our notice that a video is doing the rounds in social media on an incident on the borders… Currently, no violence is happening,” Army spokesperson, Colonel Aman Anand, said. “Differences are being addressed through interaction between military commanders, guided by established protocols on management of borders between the two countries.”
Anand said the Army strongly condemns attempts to sensationalise matters impacting national security, calling any attempt to link the video with the current situation on the northern borders as malafide. “The media is requested not to air visuals that are likely to vitiate the current situation on the borders,” he added.
The two-minute-long video ostensibly shows a brawl between troops of the two countries on the banks of Pangong Tso. It shows a clash between Chinese troopers, who arrived in a Humvee-type of a vehicle, and an Indian patrol consisting of Army men and Indo-Tibetan Police Force personnel.
The Army said that “currently no violence is happening”. On Saturday, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said India and China are talking to each other through military and diplomatic channels to resolve the standoff along the Line of Actual Control, adding that New Delhi wanted good relations with its neighbours.
Over the last two weeks, Chinese troops have clashed with the Indian Army at several points along the Line of Actual Control. India and China do not share a defined and demarcated border. Instead, there is the Line of Actual Control, which stretches thousands of kilometres from Ladakh all the way to Arunachal Pradesh. Last week, Modi reportedly met the three service chiefs, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat to discuss the border standoff.
The dispute between India and China centres around a strategic bridge being built near Daulat Beg Oldi, a military post south of the Karakoram Pass. China has reportedly asked India to stop building infrastructure even on its own side of the LAC. New Delhi, on the other hand, has asked Beijing to maintain the status quo on the border. In recent weeks, India and China have reportedly deployed additional troops along the LAC at North Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh and Ladakh.
On May 21, India had strongly contested Beijing’s claims that its soldiers had crossed the LAC and entered Chinese territory. The United States had also backed India and said that tensions along the LAC were a reminder of the fact that Chinese aggression could be real, not merely rhetorical.