Army Chief Gen Manoj Pande has carried out a comprehensive review of India's security preparedness along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. This is the first visit of Gen Pande to the sector after taking over as the Chief of the Indian Army on April 30.
"The Chief of Army Staff, General Manoj Pande is currently on a three-day forward area visit to the LAC in the states of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand," the Army said on Friday. In his visits to the forward posts, Gen Pande has been briefed by local commanders about the prevailing situation along the borders.
"Taking a first-hand assessment of the operational preparedness in forward areas, the Army Chief is scheduled to witness the high altitude operational capabilities of deployed formations, including mountaineering skills and long-range patrolling," the Army said. It said Gen Pande is also reviewing the ongoing infrastructure and development work and the Army-citizen connect in the forward areas.
"While interacting with the Commanders during his visit, the Army Chief emphasized the need for vigil and alertness along the borders," the Army said in a statement. The Indian Army has been maintaining a strict vigil along the entire stretch of the LAC since the eastern Ladakh border row erupted in May 2020.
"The Chief of Army Staff, during his interaction with the troops deployed on the forward posts, appreciated their high morale and exhorted them to maintain the high standards of professional excellence," the Army said. He also complimented the excellent synergy between the Army, CAPF (Central Armed Police Forces), civil administration, and police towards operational effectiveness and sustainable development in the border areas, the Army said.
The border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted on May 5, 2020, following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas. The face-off escalated after the Galwan Valley clashes on June 15, 2020. Both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.
As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process last year on the north and south banks of the Pangong lake and in the Gogra area. Each side currently has around 50,000 to 60,000 troops along the LAC in the sensitive sector.