After the withdrawal of forces from Pengong Lake area, the army has now started work on three other locations – Depsang, Gogra and Hot Spring, to end the confrontation and strategize for complete withdrawal and patrolling of the forces. Army sources said that the tenth round of talks between the military commanders of the two countries may be held later this month, in which these locations will be the subject of discussion.
Conflicts were observed at four locations on the LAC. The biggest conflict was in Pengong Lake area. But apart from this, the forces are also face to face in Depsang. However, the status quo did not change during the confrontation there. While the forces at Gogra and Hot Spring have retreated slightly before, the situation is still to be restored in these areas before May 2020. This is to say that the way for the restoration of the former position in Pengong has been cleared. But there will be rounds of talks on the remaining three areas.
According to Lieutenant General Rajendra Singh (retd), Pengong is now expected to reduce tensions elsewhere as well after the agreement to end the confrontation between the two armies. The Chinese army had no choice but to compromise in the manner in which the Indian Army held positions at strategically important locations in Pengong. If indeed China is willing to end the tension, then in the next meetings, the former position will soon be established in all three places.
Defense Minister Rajnath Singh had said in Parliament a day earlier that after the full withdrawal of forces from Pengong, the remaining issues will also be discussed in which he was referring to these places. These issues will be discussed in senior commander level talks within two days of Pengong being evacuated.
According to sources, there will be an emphasis on restoring patrolling from India. In the current agreement, it has been decided to suspend patrolling in the Finger area for the present. But after negotiations at the diplomatic level it will be resumed in the former position. India has been patrolling till Finger-8 in the past, while China has been patrolling till Finger-4. The patrolling was being done on the basis of their respective claims. Therefore, India wants to maintain this position until the boundary dispute is resolved.
Patrolling the main issue at the three locations
army sources said that the restoration of the main issue at the three locations patrolling like before. These places are not like Pangong Lake. The forces of both countries have already retreated at these places but it remains to be seen what steps are to be taken to restore the former position there. Restoration of patrolling is also an important issue in the other three areas.