Seven months into the face-off in East Ladakh, temperatures down to -40°C and many of its soldiers, mostly from the mainland taken ill, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army is keen to induct soldiers of Tibetan origin
The report comes after Indian forces have seen a large number of unwell PLA troops being taken away in different parts of the front.
The PLA wants Tibetan soldiers, but their antecedents have to be right. They have to be young men whose parents or at least, relatives, have been part of the Chinese Communist Party.
They must not have links with the Dalai Lama, who has been living in India for nearly 60 years and is hated by the Chinese Communist Party.
This would surely mean the Tibetan government in Exile and presumably, organisations in the West, that have been looking for self-determination at the very least.
While conditions in East Ladakh are very difficult, it is bitterly cold and the altitude (15,000-18,000 feet) creating additional problems, the Indian troops are slightly better off. Many have served in the Siachen Glacier area and conditions there are equally difficult. Others have been in high altitude posts in other parts of the country.
Indian troops have been in the Glacier since the mid-Eighties. Over the years, Indian security forces have inducted some Tibetans.
The Ladakh Scouts, a local outfit plays a major role in the area. Both sides have created winter accommodation for their troops, with heated rooms. Survival without them would be almost impossible.