Emergency procurement of certain arms and equipment have been undertaken by the armed forces to beef up combat potential in view of the eastern Ladakh border standoff, the government said in Rajya Sabha on Monday. Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik said the armed forces are procuring terrain and weather specific equipment to thwart the likely threat from India’s “Northern adversary”, in a clear reference to China.
To a specific query, the minister also said no special allowance is given to families of the armed forces personnel who are posted along the border with China. “On the basis of the threat perception and technology available, the armed forces are procuring terrain and weather specific equipment to thwart the likely threat from our Northern adversary,” he said in a written reply.
“In the current standoff, emergency procurement for certain arms and equipment have been undertaken by the armed forces to beef up their combat potential,” Naik said. Close to 100,000 Indian and Chinese troops are currently deployed in eastern Ladakh as both sides have been holding on to their ground and showing readiness for a long-haul, amid continuing diplomatic and military talks to find an amicable solution.
The face-off began in early May last year following a clash between soldiers of the two sides near Pangong lake. In the ninth round of military talks last month, both sides agreed to push for an early disengagement of troops and resolved to continue “effective efforts” to stabilise and control the situation in eastern Ladakh.
In response to another question, Naik said there has been no instance of any complaint received at the Army headquarters over the quality of food served to jawans in the last three years. “The complaints are addressed by command headquarters and below, wherever they are received,” he said.