Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has inaugurated 63 infrastructure projects constructed by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) from Ladakh today. He is currently in Leh for a three-day visit to Ladakh. The local administration in Leh has organised a programme and Mr Singh is scheduled to attend that between 2 pm to 4 pm, and later interaction with Army troops in Leh at 7 pm is also on the agenda.

Yesterday, he had a meeting with the elected representatives of Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Councils (LAHDC), Kargil and the senior officials of the Army’s Northern Commander briefed to him about the security situation along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China in Eastern Ladakh.

On the other hand, China has stepped up training along the disputed area. ‘Operations continued despite the Covid-19 pandemic and this included a “record-breaking” high-altitude drill which involved more than 1,000 troops from 20 units earlier this month,’ says Military spokesman Ren Guoqiang to a regular press conference on Thursday.

The Chinese defence ministry agrees to the fact that the People’s Liberation Army conducted more than 100 joint exercises so far this year and has stepped up its training along the disputed border with India.

However, Mr Ren said the exercise was “aimed at boosting the border troops combat capabilities in an extremely cold, tough and risky environment”, and was part of the Communist Party of China’s centenary celebrations. The exercise included the use of drones, both militia units and regular forces to strengthen their combat capabilities, he added. 

It was reported in a Hong Kong-based English media that the ‘Indian media has reported that Beijing is recruiting local Tibetans to form militia units.