• Rekindling tensions over boundary claims, Indian and Chinese troops have clashed at two points along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) recently, leaving personnel injured on both sides.
• The incidents took place in the Naku La sector — it’s a mountain pass in Sikkim at an altitude of over 5000 meters — on May 9,
and in a contested area near Pangong Tso, a lake in Ladakh, on the night of May 5-6.
• But the Army played down the two incidents as “temporary and short-duration face-offs” that were resolved by “local commanders as per mutually-accepted protocols” through dialogue and flag meetings. This kind of incident does occur as boundaries are not resolved.
• The last major violent clash between the Indian and Chinese troops had taken place on the northern bank of the 134-km long Pangong Tso (Tso means lake), two-thirds of which is controlled by China as it extends from Tibet to Ladakh, in September 2019.
• There has, however, been a significant reduction in the border tensions since the 73-day troop confrontation in the Bhutanese territory of Doklam, near the Sikkim-Bhutan-Tibet tri-junction in June-August 2017, which saw the two armies move additional infantry battalions, tanks, artillery, and missile units towards the border.
Mains Paper 2: International
Prelims level: Line of Actual Control
Mains level: Border disputes between the two countries