Chinese troops pitch seven tents in Chumar; stand-off continues
LEH: The stand-off in Chumar area of Ladakh took a new
turn on Sunday with Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) pitching seven tents
well within the Indian territory and showing no signs of withdrawal.
Official sources said that the Chinese who had arrived
in vehicles on Saturday Chumar, 300 km from Leh, started erecting the tents in
the Indian territory despite repeated warnings by the army to vacate the area.
“Nearly 100 personnel of the PLA strength was
estimated around Point 30R, a strategically important post, as it helps India
to keep a vigil deep inside the occupied territory of Chinese,” they said.
This incursion was in addition to the 35-odd personnel
who were already camping at a hillock in the Chumar area itself. The Chinese
soldiers were demanding that Indian army should withdraw simultaneously from
the area but the army had decided to dig in its heels.
The Chinese soldiers had retreated to their territory
on Thursday night.
The Point 30R post has been frequented by PLA often as
Indian Army has kept an observation post which dominates the Line of Actual
Control (LAC) and gives advantage to India in keeping a vigil on the Chinese
activity deep across the border.
Chinese helicopters were again seen in action for
dropping food packets for its soldiers but none of them violated the air space.
The food packets were later collected by the PLA personnel and stored inside
“The tension in this area erupted on Sunday when some
of the Chinese workers, who were constructing road on their side, started
entering into the Indian side and also claimed that they had orders to build
road up to Tible, five km deep into the Indian territory,” sources said.
The Indian army asked the Chinese workers to leave,
telling them that otherwise they would face prosecution under Indian laws for
entering the country illegally.
Chumar, the last village in Ladakh area bordering
Himachal Pradesh, has been a bone of contention with China claiming it to be
its own territory.
In 2012, the PLA dropped some of its soldiers in this
region and dismantled the makeshift storage tents of the Army and ITBP.
Chumar had become a flash point during the fortnight
long stand-off last year in Daulat Beg Oldie (DBO) last year as the Chinese
side had objected to overhead bunkers erected by the Indian side.
As part of an agreement reached at the flag meeting to
end the stand-off from April-May 2013 at DBO, the Indian side had to dismantle
some overhead bunkers in Chumar.
Again, Chumar witnessed Chinese troops walking away
with an Army surveillance camera on June 17 which was meant for keeping an eye
on the PLA troops patrolling there. The same camera was returned after a few
During winter this year, Chinese soldiers attempted to
enter this area riding on horses. The area has witnessed frequent incursion
attempts by the Chinese troops.