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Fully Prepared To Deal With Any Scenario In The Eastern Theatre: Lt. Gen. Rana Pratap Kalita

Story Highlights
  • The Eastern Army commander stated that his forces have a "well-defined" surveillance plan and that overall monitoring of the areas has improved significantly.
  • According to people acquainted with the situation, the two parties disengaged in line with the plan, which also included a mutual inspection of the entire procedure.

According to Eastern Army Commander Lieutenant General Rana Pratap Kalita, the general situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China in the eastern theatre is “fairly peaceful” and “firmly under control,” and the Indian military is well prepared to deal with any eventuality.

He stated that the Indian Army’s priority has been on increasing its military capability and improving monitoring of Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) actions along the LAC.

The commander stated that the region has been stable and that no substantial “changes or palpable shift of position have been detected,” notwithstanding a continued clash between Indian and Chinese forces at the Demchok and Depsang friction spots in eastern Ladakh.

He stated that with the expansion of infrastructure along the LAC and the introduction of various platforms such as drones, helicopters, and electronic surveillance equipment, the Army is now in a better position to monitor the region of its interest in the eastern theatre.

The eastern theatre consists mostly of border areas along the LAC in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, with a handful of important forward sites, especially in the Tawang and North Sikkim sectors.

“Let me assure you that the Indian Army is completely equipped to cope with any eventuality in the eastern theatre,” Lt Gen. Kalita said. “The border problem with China is being addressed at all levels to ensure that there is no friction.”

He made the remarks during an informal discussion with a group of visiting media in Kibithu on Saturday, following the naming of the Army base in the vital area after India’s first Chief of Defence Staff, General Bipin Rawat, who died in a helicopter crash on December 8 last year.

According to Lt Gen. Kalita, the Indian Army is constantly watching the PLA’s activities along the LAC and is prepared to meet any challenge.

“We also keep a close eye on what’s going on near the borders. We keep a close eye on everything that happens around our borders “He stated.

Following the eastern Ladakh stalemate, which began on May 5, 2020, India has increased infrastructure construction along the almost 3,500-kilometer LAC.

“Over time, we have thoroughly prepared ourselves and are well poised to minimise any obstacles and eventualities in the eastern theatre,” Lt Gen. Kalita added.

According to the Eastern Army commander, India and China have a strong mechanism in place in accordance with bilateral treaties to defuse any emergent scenario in the region.

“We have a robust procedure in place to defuse any growing scenario and tension at the tactical level,” he said.

“We are concentrating on the development of operational capability in all areas. The primary areas of concentration have been infrastructural development, increased connectivity, and military modernization “He took note.

According to the commander “Currently, the situation at the borders is quite quiet and well-managed. There have been reports of the PLA continuing to establish infrastructure, which we are closely monitoring “.

He stated that India had taken a “whole-of-government” approach to improving border infrastructure.

“There have been advances in forward connection, including the construction of a bridge across the Brahmaputra River, the laying of new railway lines, and the development of air connectivity to the northeastern states,” he said.

The Eastern Army commander stated that his forces have a “well-defined” surveillance plan and that overall monitoring of the areas has improved significantly.

“We are expanding our surveillance capability and capacity with the infusion of current technology paired with physical surveillance,” he said.

When asked if the border dispute in eastern Ladakh had an impact on the eastern sector, Lt Gen. Kalita said the dynamics of the Eastern Command and the Northern Command are completely different because the terrain, the size of the area of operation, the operational dynamics, and the objectives of operations all vary in an unusual way.

“Until recently, we’ve had cordial interactions at the functional level of ground commander, and there haven’t been many areas of tension in the recent past,” he stated.

Lt Gen. Kalita stated that the Indian and Chinese sides have well-established systems in place, such as formal engagements and border staff meetings, to resolve any disagreements.

The Eastern Army commander was in Kibithu for a ceremony naming the military post after Gen. Rawat.

As part of a five-day disengagement process, the Indian and Chinese forces deployed their frontline soldiers to the rear from the face-off site of Patrolling Point 15 in the Gogra-Hotsprings area of eastern Ladakh on Monday, and removed temporary equipment there.

According to people acquainted with the situation, the two parties disengaged in line with the plan, which also included a mutual inspection of the entire procedure.

On September 8, the two sides stated that they had begun to disengage from Patrolling Point 15, a significant step forward in the halted process of withdrawing soldiers from the region’s remaining friction spots.

There has been no progress in resolving the conflict in Demchok and Depsang.

On the counter-insurgency operations being conducted out by the Army in the northeastern region, Lt Gen. Kalita stated that the deployment is dictated by the security situation and the violent parameters.

“The deployment of the Army for counter-insurgency duties is determined by the security situation and the parameters of violence. As the situation improves, the Army is de-inducted, and the Central Armed Police Forces or police are tasked with maintaining peace and stability “He stated.

“With the improvement in the situation in the northeast, the Army has been de-inducted and is oriented for its primary job,” he continued.

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