Marking a major breakthrough in the disengagement talks between India and China, both countries on Thursday pulled back their troops from the Gogra post in Eastern Ladakh, the second-most sensitive region of the faceoff. The disengagement at Gogra PP17A was carried out on August 4-5 and the troops have now returned to their respective permanent bases. Both sides have agreed to cease forward deployments, the Army informed in a press release today.
Moreover, all temporary structures and other allied infrastructure on both sides have been dismantled and mutually verified. The landform in the area has been restored by both sides to the pre-stand-off period. The troops in the area had been in a face-off ever since May last year.
The development comes after the 12th round of talks between the Corps Commanders of India and China that was held on July 31, 2021, at Chushul Moldo Meeting Point in Eastern Ladakh. As an outcome of the meeting, both sides had agreed to disengage troops in the area of Gogra.
This agreement ensures that the LAC in this area will be strictly observed and respected by both sides and that there is no unilateral change in the status quo. With this, one more sensitive area of face-off has been resolved. During the talks, both sides expressed commitment to take the talks forward and resolve the remaining issues along the LAC in the Western Sector.
“The Indian Army along with ITBP is totally committed to ensure the sovereignty of the nation and maintain peace and tranquility along the LAC in the Western Sector,” the release said.
Disengagement at Galwan
The two countries’ foreign ministers have reached a five-point consensus on continuing dialogue and quickly disengage while honouring all existing agreements and protocol on China-India boundary affairs. After 11 rounds of military talks, China’s People’s Liberation Army retreated from the Finger 4 area and Patrol point 14 along the LAC, while India pre-empted PLA activity on the Southern Bank of Pangong Tso Lake capturing positions of ‘strategic importance’ in the Fingers area. The disengagement is yet to be completed in friction points such as Hot Springs and Depsang. 20 jawans were martyred on June last year amid a violent face-off between Indo-China troops at LAC’s Galwan Valley.