The standoff at Ladakh near the Sino-Indian border has escalated with China’s outright rejection of an Indian proposal of gradual troop reduction at Chumar, an area of contention between the two countries near the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
The fifth flag meeting between the two armies on Tuesday remained inconclusive even though the Army and the defence ministry officials were tight-lipped on the latest meeting. Four flag meetings last week could not resolve the issue.
The Army only admitted that it received a proposal of yet another flag meeting from China’s People’s Liberation Army to end the impasse at Chumar where Indian and Chinese troops are confronting each other since the last two weeks.
The China Study Group, the government’s highest decision-making body on matters pertaining to China, met here to review the situation. Comprising of the National Security Adviser, three service chiefs, Cabinet Secretary and Defence, Home and Foreign secretaries, the group received a situation report from the Army and took stock of the ground scenario ahead of a briefing for Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, prior to his departure to the United States.
“Diplomacy is at work quietly. We are confident that border security is in good hands,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said here.
There are reports of China declining India’s offer of gradual troop reduction and increasing the distance between the soldiers who are locked in an eyeball-to-eyeball situation and holding on to their positions.