Rajnath Singh to address Parliament on India-China border row as tensions continue to simmer in Ladakh

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Rajnath Singh to address Parliament on India-China border row as tensions continue to simmer in Ladakh
Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh visits Galwan Valley in Easter Ladakh in JulyBCCL
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is scheduled to address the Lok Sabha today on the border tensions between India and China.
  • The development comes even as China is reportedly laying down fibre cable near Pangong Tso lake, the latest hotspot between the two countries, for more secure communication.
  • The Indian Army, on the other hand, still relies for radio communications.
It’s day two of the Indian Parliament's Monsoon session, and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is scheduled to address an issue that has many on the edge of their seat — the border tensions between India and China.

At the Business Advisory Committee that met on Sunday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi had said that the statement will be made keeping in mind the “sensitivities of the situation and the strategic points.”

The development comes as China is laying down fibre cable along the banks of Pangong Tso in Eastern Ladakh — the most recent hotspot after Galwan Valley, where both sides are locked in a stand-off — to bolster their communications ahead of winter setting in, according to Reuters.

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Fibre cable trumps radio communication
Fibre cable is a more secure form of communication than radio communications, which the Indian Army uses. It would allow frontline troops to communicate with their bases without being heard.

The radio communication that the Indian Army uses is encrypted — so not just anyone can tap into what is being said — but it does raise the likelihood of being intercepted. Officials told Reuters that the progress of laying down these fibre cables is happening at ‘breakneck speed’.

Just last week, Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, having agreed on a 5-point plan to de-escalate tensions along their shared border on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet in Moscow.

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Singh also met with the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Bipin Rawat, National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval, and three Indian Army Service Chiefs. However, not much has changed along the 70-kilometer-long front that forms the southern banks of Pangong Tso. Officials told Reuters that there have been no significant withdrawals, nor have there been any additional reinforcement of troops.

The armies are currently situated along the ridges of the disputed border in the location known as the ‘Finger Area’. The Indian Army claims that it has dominated most of the heights with Chinese troops poised along Finger 4.

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