India has moved its troops to the eastern part of the border with China in Ladakh after noticing Chinese troop movement at least two locations across the Line of Actual Control in Arunachal Pradesh.
Government sources told CNN-News18 the People’s Liberation Army has built ups its presence opposite Arunachal Pradesh's Asaphila and Fishtail-2 sectors, nearly 20 km from the Indian territory.
Officials said that Indian troops are fully prepared to thwart any attempts by China to make incursions and the forces have strengthened vigilance all along the LAC, from Ladakh to Arunachal Pradesh.
News agency Reuters had recently reported that India had sent additional troops to the eastern district of Anjaw in Arunachal Pradesh, which China also claims as its territory, raising the prospect of a wider face-off.
“The military presence has surely increased, but as far as incursions are concerned, there are no verified reports as such,” Ayushi Sudan, Anjaw's chief civil servant, had told Reuers, adding that several Indian army battalions were stationed there.
Arunachal Pradesh, which China calls South Tibet, was at the centre of a full-scale border war between India and China in 1962, and security analysts have warned that it could become a flash-point again.
Earlier this month, China’s PLA had allegedly kidnapped five Indian villagers from Arunachal Pradesh. The five were reportedly taken away by a team of the PLA from a jungle where they were hunting.
China also asserted that they do not recognise Arunachal Pradesh to be Indian territory.
“China’s position on the eastern section of the China and India boundary and China’s southern Tibet is consistent and clear,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said at a press briefing. “We have never recognised the so-called Arunachal Pradesh illegally established on the Chinese territory,” he said.
The five Indian men were returned to India after 12 days. The army said three such incidents, including the latest one, had taken place this year in Upper Subansiri and West Siang districts of Arunachal Pradesh and that all have been brought back home.