Updated:October 30, 2021
-The Times Of India
NEW DELHI: India has deployed recently acquired US-made weaponry along it’s border with China, part of a new offensive to bolster it’s capabilities as the two countries remain deadlocked over disputed territories in the Himalayas.
The buildup in India’s northeast is centered on the Tawang Plateau adjoining Bhutan and Tibet, a piece of land claimed by China but controlled by India. It holds historical political and military significance: In 1959, the Dalai Lama fled to India across nearby mountain passes to escape a Chinese military operation. Three years later, both sides fought a war in the area.
Now US-manufactured Chinook helicopters, ultra-light towed howitzers and rifles, as well as domestically-made supersonic cruise missiles and a new-age surveillance system will back Indian troops in areas bordering Eastern Tibet. The weapons have all been acquired in the past few years as defence ties between the US and India have strengthened due to rising concerns about Chinese assertiveness.
Indian military personnel escorted a group of reporters through the region last week to highlight the country’s new offensive capabilities. Eastern Army Commander Lieutenant General Manoj Pande said that boots, armor, artillery, and air support were being combined to make the force “agile, lean and mean so we can deploy faster.”