Indian and Chinese soldiers exchanged New Year greetings and sweets at 10 places along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) on Saturday, including at the “friction points” in eastern Ladakh, ahead of the 14th round of corps commander-level talks later this month in yet another bid to defuse the 20-month-long military confrontation, Trend reports citing Times of India.
“Local commanders are maintaining their regular and customary interactions with their counterparts from the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). It serves to keep the tensions down along the frontier, while higher-level diplomatic and military talks take place to resolve outstanding issues,” a senior Army officer said.
The Indian Army, in keeping with its tradition, also presented sweets to Pakistani soldiers at some places along the Line of Control (LoC) on Saturday. But the interactions with the PLA were more noteworthy since the exchange of sweets also took place at the “major friction points” in eastern Ladakh, including the “Bottleneck” area in the strategically-located Depsang Plains as well as in Demchok.
The other places were the Karakoram Pass, Daulat Beg Oldie, Kongka La and Chushul-Moldo in eastern Ladakh. Similar interactions took place in other sectors of the 3,488-km LAC, including Nathu La and Kongra La in Sikkim and Bum La and Wacha Damai in Arunachal Pradesh.
After the multiple PLA incursions into eastern Ladakh in 2020, which triggered the still-continuing military confrontation with India, troop disengagement took place in the Pangong Tso-Kailash Range region in February last year and subsequently at Patrolling Point-17A near the Gogra post in early-August.