'Fake, baseless': Indian Army dismisses reports of Chinese PLA using microwave weapons in eastern Ladakh

FP Staff
·2-min read

The Indian Army on Wednesday dismissed reports that said that China had used microwave weapons in eastern Ladakh as "fake" and "baseless" with a senior officer terming it part of the psychological operation from across the border.

Beijing and New Delhi have been engaged in a stand-off in Ladakh since May over the Line of Actual Control.

"Media articles on employment of microwave weapons in Eastern Ladakh are baseless. The news is FAKE," the Indian Army said in a tweet.

Further, a senior army officer was quoted as saying by The Times of India, "It's a fake, ludicrous claim, part of the continuing psychological operations from across the border. PLA does not seem to have recovered from the shock of our troops occupying multiple Kailash range heights on the south bank of Pangong Tso-Chushul on 29-30 August."

A report in the British daily The Times had said that Chinese forces had turned two strategic hilltops occupied by Indian soldiers "into a microwave oven", forcing them to retreat and allowing the positions to be retaken without an exchange of conventional fire.

The report was based on claims made by Jin Canrong, a professor of international relations at Beijing's Renmin University, who said that the weapons were said to have been deployed in late August.

"Within 15 minutes of the weapons being deployed, those occupying the hilltops all began to vomit. They couldn't stand up, so they fled. This was how we retook the ground," the professor allegedly said during a lecture.


Microwave weapons work like an oven, heating the water molecules under the skin to very high temperatures, forcing people out of the area.

Besides China, the United States has also developed microwave-style weapons, called the Active Denial System, according to a report.

India's Defense Research and Development Organisation had announced in September that it was planned to develop directed energy weapons or DEWs that employ high-energy lasers and microwaves.

The national programme is likely to comprise of short, medium and long-term goals, with an end goal of developing the weapon variants of up to 100kW, The Times of India reported in September, citing sources.

The row over the LAC started with violent clashes between the two armies over claims on Ladakh's Pangong Tso lake and the Fingers region in May, with the recent Corps Commander-level talks in Chushul on 6 November concluding with China proposing to move back its troops on Finger 8 and back to the lake's south bank.

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