China deploys 3 more joint armed brigades on LAC

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New Delhi: China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has deployed three more combined armed brigades of its India-centred Western Theater Command along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

India is keeping a close watch on these three Chinese brigades deployed on LAC in -40° C temperature. Army and Air Force are ready to respond to any misadventure of China.

The PLA is fully deployed in Aksai Chin occupied by China. There are two army divisions and a border guard division with their rocket, armor, artillery and missile support regiments. The People’s Liberation Army is strengthening its Western Theater Command amid ongoing tension along the India-China border.

The Western Theater Command of the PLA is responsible for the security of the border with India. The PLA has deployed two Combined Armed Brigades opposite Arunachal Pradesh and another brigade as reserve near the Siliguri Corridor near the China-Bhutan border.

These three brigades were incorporated into the Western Theater Command from the PLA’s Eastern and Southern Theater Commands. The PLA has about 4,500 soldiers in all brigades.

An Indian Army official said that with the onset of winter, the movement of the PLA’s Western Theater Command and the three Combined Armed Brigades brought in as a reserve is being monitored. The army is also keeping an eye on whether these Chinese brigades will go back to their bases or be deployed in the depth areas of the Western Theater Command. India is waiting for the 17th round of commander-level military talks with China, in which this issue may come up.

India’s Foreign Minister Dr S Jaishankar has said many times that peace and stability on LAC is the only key to restoring bilateral relations. Army Chief General Manoj Pandey had also told that China is building infrastructure on LAC. There has been no reduction in the number of PLA troops in China-occupied Aksai Chin.

According to an official, PLA air force is also on standby at Gar Gunsa air base besides fighter jets at Hotan, Kashgar, Lhasa and Nyingchi airports. India hopes that the PLA brigades will go back to their original bases, but if this does not happen then the Indian Army will have to be on alert in winter.

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