India ‘Firmly In Control’ Of Its Northern Border: Gen R P Kalita

The country’s northern border areas are “stable,” and the Indian Armed Forces are still “firmly in control,” Lt. General R. P. Kalita, commander of the Eastern Army, said on Friday.

Kalita’s claim comes a week after Indian and Chinese soldiers fought at the Yangtze border area, northeast of the monastery town of Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, which China’s PLA had invaded in 1962.

He said that the Indian Army and the People’s Liberation Army of China have different ideas about some parts of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), but that both sides agree on eight of these places.

Kalita said that the PLA crossed into one of these areas in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh, which was “very strongly contested” by Indian forces on the ground.

General Officer Commanding-in-Chief (GOC-in-C), Eastern Command, Lt. General Kalita, said, “Right now, I’d like to reassure everyone that the border areas along the northern border are stable and we are in full control.”

He said that there were some minor injuries to soldiers on both sides, but that the problem was solved by the local commanders using existing protocols to talk things out.

“It led to some physical violence, but it was kept under control at the local level by using bilateral mechanisms and protocols already in place,” the commander of the Eastern Army said.

He said that what happened next was a flag meeting at the delegation level in Bumla, where the problem was worked out further.

China is India’s northern neighbour. When asked if China had invaded Arunachal or if it held any land there, the Army commander said, “The short answer is no.”

Kalita was talking to reporters after a solemn wreath-laying ceremony at Fort William, the headquarters of the Eastern Command, on the 51st Vijay Diwas. This day celebrates the victory of the Indian armed forces and the Mukti Bahini over Pakistan, which freed Bangladesh in 1971.

The Army commander said that as soldiers, the Armed forces are always ready to protect the country, “whether in peace or in war.” He said that the main job of the defence forces is to protect the country’s borders from threats from both inside and outside the country.

“We are ready for everything that could happen,” he said.

Kalita said that in the last 10 to 15 years, there has been a lot of focus on building infrastructure, especially in border areas. This will definitely improve the operational capabilities of the Indian Armed Forces.

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