Indian Defence

Disengagement In Pangong Tso – Is It a Trap?

Hello defence lovers! Recently India and China have agreed upon the disengagement in Pangong Tso in Ladakh. The Disengagement in the northern banks of Pangong Tso has already started. But is this disengagement going to be a disastrous move for India? Is India entering into a cleverly planned Chinese Trap? We will try to answer this question in this article.

Following the last Corp Commander level talks, India and China have mutually agreed upon the phased disengagement in the Ladakh. According to the phased disengagement, the first Phase would be conducted in Pangong Tso. The disengagement has already started in Pangong Tso and we have seen both the armies retracting its Tanks from the Standoff positions.

As of now, only heavy equipment would be pulled out of the region. Infantry level disengagement would be conducted in the next phase. According to honourable defence minister Rajnath Singh, the armies would disengage first on the northern banks of the Pangong Tso lake followed by disengagement in the southern banks. The Status Quo of March 2020 will be restored, which means that Indian forces will fall back to Finger 3 and the Chinese forces will retreat to Finger 8. The area between finger 3 to finger 8 will be a buffer zone and patrolling will resume in that area only after mutual agreement.

Why China Now Wants Disengagement?

Now a question might arise that why China, all of a sudden wants disengagement after almost a year long Stand off. There are many reasons behind this.

The Ladakh standoff was carefully planned by the communist party of China to divert its people’s attention from the issue of Chinese Virus. According to reports, there were widespread anger and dissatisfaction in the common Chinese people. Anti-government sentiments were rising. In such a situation, a warlike condition would ignite a nationalist sentiment in the people thus they would stand firmly with the government. It was also to distract the attention of Global media from the issue of the origin of COVID 19.

China also thought that it would kill two birds with a single stone. On the one hand it would gain some support from its public, on the other hand it would also gain some Indian territories. The long drawn standoff has already put stress on the Indian Economy which is still recovering from the effect of Chinese Virus.

Meanwhile, the Galwan valley incident gave China a taste of Indian Power. A conventional full-scale war would be disastrous for china. China wrongly estimated the Indian Army’s power and will to fight.

Moreover, China is now interested in restoring its global image. It wants to rebuild its reputation which has been completely destroyed by its own Chinese virus. Now China wants to Portray itself as a responsible global superpower.

China has threatened counties with sanctions if they boycott the Winter Olympics in 2022. The international pressure on China has somewhat reduced. As Joe Biden is now the president of the United States, he would certainly end the trade war in next few months. Thus things are going in favor of China as of now. Hence China no longer needs the Ladakh Standoff.

Why The Disengagement Can Be A Trap?

If we look at the disengagement plan carefully, we would find that China has achieved exactly what it has desired! The current plan would create a buffer zone from finger 4 to finger 8, which was never a disputed territory at all, rather a clearly demarcated Indian territory.

Moreover, in this disengagement plan, India has to vacate the strategic tops in the southern bank of Pangong Tso lake. These tops include the blacktop, the helmet top and the Kailash range which are extremely Strategically valuable. These positions gave the Indian army a clear advantage over the PLA..From these positions, the Chinese territories and their camps on their side of LAC were visible. It also provided overwatch to the Indian Army over the narrow pass which was the only way for the movement of Tanks.

Thus giving up these posts is a complete disaster! India is giving up its only bargaining chip. Moreover the Chinese are not at all trust worthy! This could be a trap. Once our troops withdraw, there is no guarantee that the Chinese troops won’t return and occupy the area upto finger 4 and the strategic positions on the south bank.

The disengagement process is always a better option unless its favourable for the opponent! The current plan gives up not only Indian territory as buffer zone but also the key positions!

But we must keep faith in our government and our Army! Whatever they will do, they will do it in a broader national interest. Only the mistakes like 1962 must not be repeated.



Sheershoo Deb

I am a defense aspirant preparing to be an officer in the prestigious Indian armed forces. Earning the prestigious blue uniform is my dream.

One Comment

  1. I am not sure how you say finger8 was non disputed. We use to patrol till finger8 but had no permanent outposts. And Cheena use to patrol till finger 3-4. So this disengagement age is exactly status quo in my view.

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