I. The Big Story: The Sino-Indian Border Dispute
Multiple things have happened along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) between China and India since the newsletter was last published two weeks back. This issue highlights the events between the two countries since August 31.
1. India’s first reported offensive in the current stand-off
The India armed forces launched “preemptive operations” to secure tactical heights at the Kailash ranges opposite Chushul bowl in eastern Ladakh on the night of August 29/30. Indian troops anticipated the PLA moves and undertook measures to strengthen its positions. The Kailash Range, from the south bank of Pangong Tso to Tsaka La, includes Helmet, Black Top, Gurung Hill, Magar Hill, Mukhpari, Rezang La and Rechin La. All these areas are on the Indian side of the LAC and were sites of intense battles in the China-India War of October-November 1962, write Lt Gen HS Panag, the Indian Army Veteran. “The Kailash Range extends 360 km to the south-east, all the way to Mount Kailash. In the Chushul Sector, it dominates the Chushul Bowl to the west and Spanggur Tso to the east. Whoever controls the heights on the Kailash Range — from Pangong Tso to Rechin La — dominates all routes to the east and west, and forces the other side to hold defences on the next ridgeline 6-8 km away, or occupy positions of disadvantage on lower heights,” writes Gen Panag.