Northeast Today|July 2020
The long-standing dispute in the Himalayan region between the two nuclear enabled countries has seen many a scuffle since the 1962, Sino-India war. The recent face-off at Galwan Valley resulted in the death of 20 Indian soldiers, however, the casualty on the Chinese side cannot be confirmed. While China is known for its territory grabbing techniques, India sent out a clear signal to the Red Dragon by conducting a ‘Digital Strike’ that it won’t tolerate any encroachment on its territory. Mumeninaz Zaman delves deeper into the exchange of tit for tat between India and China.
Mumeninaz Zaman

The border dispute between India and China dates back to 1914, when the McMahon line was established, however, the Chinese never complied with the border agreement. This led to the war of 1962 during which China redraw the border as the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in its own favour. Later in the 1967 war India claimed its Himalayan border.

Since then, bloodless clashes erupted between the two superpowers on differing perceptions over the LAC, in 2013 and then in 2017 in Doklam, with either side claiming its presence by building infrastructures and constructing roads.

The Galwan Valley incident

Tensions simmer between the two Asian giants when on the intervening night of the June 15, Indian and Chinese forces engaged in a brawl, in one of the most treacherous terrains on earth. The strife that took place on ridges at a height of nearly 4,300m (14,000 ft) on steep terrain was all about fistfights and scuffle with stones, iron rods and other makeshift weapons apart from soldiers falling or being knocked from the mountainous terrain. It needs to be mentioned here that despite the regularity of Sino-Indian border standoffs, there had not been a fatality or shot fired on the border since 1975, owing to the 1996 agreement that prohibits using of firearms in the area. This clash claimed the lives of at least 20 Indian soldiers — including a commanding officer — and an unknown number of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) forces. It was the bloodiest confrontation on the Sino-Indian frontier in over half a century.


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July 2020