New Delhi: Around the time Indian and Chinese troops were involved in a scuffle in North Sikkim last week, Chinese military choppers, too, were spotted near Ladakh, prompting the Indian Air Force (IAF) to deploy its fighter jets along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), news agency ANI has reported. Also Read - Sino-India Border Clashes: China Says Its Troops Committed to Uphold Peace
Notably, the nearly 3,500-km-long LAC is the de-facto border between the world’s two most populous countries. Also Read - Three Years After Doklam, Indian And Chinese Troops Clash in North Sikkim
“The Chinese military helicopters were flying very close to the LAC. After we picked up their movement, the IAF fighter jets flew patrols in the area,” ANI quoted government sources as saying.
The sources further said that the Chinese choppers did not cross the LAC into the Indian territory in that area.
On May 9, clashes had broken out involving a total of nearly 200 personnel from the Indian Army and the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) at the Naku La sector in North Sikkim. The issue was later resolved after interaction between the two sides.
In its statement on the issue, the Chinese Foreign Ministry had later said that its troops were ‘committed to upholding peace.’
This latest ‘flare-up’ between China and India also come close on the heels of reports that Pakistan has increased patrols by its fighter jets along its eastern border with India, fearing a possible retaliation over the Handwara encounter earlier this month, in which five Indian security personnel-four from the Army and one from the Jammu and Kashmir Police-were martyred.
Among those to lose their lives were the then-Commanding Officer (CO) of the 21 Rashtriya Rifles (RR), Colonel Ashutosh Sharma, and Major Anuj Sood.