NEW DELHI: At least 20 Indian military personnel including an Officer were killed in clashes with Chinese forces at Line of Actual Control last night, reports Indian media.
According to Indian Army statement, the ‘violent face-off’ took place last night in Galwan valley. Those killed have been identified as Colonel Santosh Babu, commanding officer of 16 Bihar, Havildar Palani and Sepoy Ojha.
Minutes later, Indian Army issued another statement claiming ‘casualties on both sides’.
This is said to be first LAC combat casualties since 1975, which eventually proved that the claims by the Indian government about ‘disengagement’ and ‘de-escalation’ were all lies.
Although there hasn’t been any official statement about the number of rising casualties at Ladakh, Indian and western media quoted multiple sources as confirming that up to 20 Indian military personnel were killed and many more missing after those clashes.
Minutes later, Indian Army too issued statement, confirming 20 casualties.
China Reacts: Responding to news reports of killing of Indian military personnel, Chinese Foreign minister said Indian troops on Monday seriously violated the consensus of the two sides by illegally crossing the border twice and carrying out provocative attacks on Chinese soldiers, resulting in serious physical clashes.
He said China has lodged solemn representations with the Indian side and urged it to strictly restrain its front line troops from crossing the border or taking any unilateral action that may complicate the border situation.
Meanwhile, Army Chief Gen MM Naravane cancelled his visit to Pathankot military station.
Army Chief Gen MM Naravane’s planned visit to Pathankot military station has been cancelled, reports said.
The Army Chief cancelled his visit following the killing of two army men and an officer in a violent faceoff with Chinese troops in the Galwan Valley last night,
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also held a meeting with Chief of Defence Staff General.
Later, Indian Ministry for External Affairs released statement saying “On late-evening&night of June 15,a violent face-off happened as a result of an attempt by Chinese side to unilaterally change status quo there. Both sides suffered casualties that could have been avoided had agreement at higher level been scrupulously followed by Chinese side.”
It further said “we remain firmly convinced of the need for the maintenance of peace and tranquility in the border areas and the resolution of differences through dialogue. At the same time, we are also strongly committed to ensuring India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
The Indian External Affairs Ministry said “Given its responsible approach to border management, India is very clear that all its activities are always within the Indian side of the LAC. We expect the same of the Chinese side.”