General (Gen) Bipin Rawat, the chief of defence staff (CDS), arrived in Jammu on a two-day visit on Saturday amid a spike in skirmishes with Pakistan along the 744-kilometre (km) Line of Control (LoC) and protracted Sino-India stand-off along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.
“He was accompanied by Northern Army commander Lieutenant (Lt) Gen YK Joshi from Delhi. He visited the headquarters of 16 Corps at Nagrota, where he reviewed the prevailing security scenario along the LoC south of Pir Panjal. Lt Gen Harsha Gupta, the GOC of the 16 Corps, briefed him about the security scenario and measures to effectively counter Pakistani shelling,” said Army officials.
He was also briefed about the Sino-Indo stand-off along the LAC in eastern Ladakh and arrangements being made for a long haul in view of the ensuing winter, when mountain passes to Ladakh are snowed under and road connectivity gets blocked.
Mercury dips to sub-zero temperatures during the harsh winter in Ladakh.
Several war veterans and defence experts anticipate a “hot” winter along the LAC in Ladakh this year.
China reportedly has deployed around 60,000 troops besides tanks and armoured vehicles in Ladakh.
India and China are in an eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation in the hostile terrain of Ladakh.
Gen Rawat’s visit comes days ahead of the General Officer Commanding (GOC)-level talks with China slated to be held on October 19.
On Saturday evening, Gen Rawat also paid obeisance at the cave shrine of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi.
In a separate incident, Pakistan violated ceasefire again in Khari Karmara area of Jammu’s Poonch district on Saturday.
“At about 6:30 pm, Pakistan initiated unprovoked ceasefire violation and targeted Indian posts and villages. Indian Army retaliated befittingly,” said a defence spokesman.