Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday visited Stakna in Leh as part of his two-day visit to Ladakh and Jammu and Kashmir and interacted with Indian soldiers at Lukung post in a bid to boost their morale.
Amid the disengagement talks, the Defence Minister today sent a strong message to China from Ladakh and said not one inch of India's land can be taken by any power in the world. He further said that the talks are on to resolve the dispute, however, there's no guarantee to what extent it can be resolved.
"Talks are underway to resolve the border dispute but to what extent it can be resolved I cannot guarantee. I can assure you, not one inch of our land can be taken by any power in the world. If a solution can be found by talks, there is nothing better," he said.
Meanwhile, Rajnath Singh has arrived in Srinagar for the second-leg of his journey. He will review the situation at the borders and also visit forward areas in Jammu and Kashmir, said Defence Minister's Office.
Rajnath Singh's Ladakh visit updates:
Rajnath Singh interacts with soldiers:
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh interacted with Indian Army and ITBP personnel at Lukung, along with Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and Army Chief General MM Naravane.
Defence Minister pays tribute to Galwan braves:
Rajnath Singh paid homage to the martyred soldiers in Galwan Valley and said "Recently what happened between troops of India and China at PP14, how some of our personnel sacrificed their lives protecting our border. I am happy to meet you all but also saddened because of their loss. I pay my tributes to them."
Rajnath interacts with troops at Lukung:
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today interacted with India soldiers deployed at Lukung post, along with CDS General Bipin Rawat and Army Chief General MM Naravane.
Indian Army T-90 tanks carry out exercise:
Indian Army T-90 tanks and BMP infantry combat vehicles carry out an exercise at Stakna, Leh in presence of the Defence Minister, Chief of Defence Staff and the Army Chief.
Indian troops carry out para dropping exercise:
Troops of Indian Armed Forces carry out para dropping exercise at Stakna, Leh in presence of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and Army Chief General MM Naravane.
Amid LAC standoff, Rajnath Singh visits Ladakh
Rajnath Singh arrived in Ladakh earlier today and met with the army commanders to take stock of the situation at the LAC amid a standoff with China. He was accompanied by CDS Bipin Rawat and Army Chief General M M Naravane.
The Defence Minister was briefed by the Army Chief, Army Commander and the Corps Commander on the latest on-ground situation after the disengagement process at the LAC. During their meeting, it is expected to bring out further modalities for disengagement and more specifically the relocation of troops at the flashpoints at Pangong Tso and Hot Springs.
This is the Defence minister’s first visit to Ladakh since the faceoff with China commenced. Singh is likely to visit Atal Tunnel, previously known as Rohtang Tunnel, named after former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. This is a highway tunnel being built under the Rohtang Pass in the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas on the Leh-Manali Highway.
After his Ladakh visit, the Defence Minister will head towards Jammu and Kashmir to review the situation on Line of Control (LoC).
Taking to Twitter, Singh said, "Leaving for Leh on a two-day visit to Ladakh and Jammu-Kashmir. I shall be visiting the forward areas to review the situation at the borders and also interact with the Armed Forces personnel deployed in the region. Looking forward to it."
No change in India's position on LAC: MEA
The Ministry of External Affair (MEA) had on Thursday said that the ongoing disengagement process is specifically aimed at addressing the face-off situations with China along the LAC in eastern Ladakh.
"There is absolutely no change with respect to India's position on the Line of Actual Control. We are fully committed to observing and respecting the LAC. Any unilateral attempts to change the status quo along the LAC are not acceptable," said MEA Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava.
On the fourth round of talks between senior commanders of Indian and Chinese armies on July 14, Srivastava said they reviewed the progress of implementation of the ongoing process and discussed further steps to ensure complete disengagement at the earliest.
"The two sides remain committed to the objective of complete disengagement and full restoration of peace and tranquillity in the India-China border areas. The two sides will continue their diplomatic and military engagements to achieve these outcomes," he said.
On June 15, twenty Indian soldiers were killed during combat with Chinese forces in Galwan valley, leading to tensions between India and China. However, the Chinese soldiers subsequently started moving back following dialogues between two countries through the military level and diplomatic level.