Villagers helping Indian Army in their fight against China by providing supply
Ladakh: Indian villagers are daring to travel the difficult path of the Himalayas to reach the top and provide supplies to the Indian Army engaged in a standoff with Chinese troops in a bid to safeguard their village from coming under Chinese control, according to a report by The Guardian.
These villagers are residents of Chushul.
With unwieldy and overstuffed duffel bags, rice sacks, heavy fuel cans and bamboo canes strapped to their backs, they trudge upwards to a Himalayan mountain peak known as Black Top, where hundreds of Indian army tents are stationed on the horizon, reports The Guardian.
The 100-odd men, women and young boys are not making this arduous journey out of kindness. In the coming winter months, temperatures here will drop to –40C. The villagers fear that if they do not help the Indian army secure their positions along the mountain ridges bordering China – and help prepare the troops for the harsh winter ahead – their village might soon be under Chinese control, the British newspaper reported.
“We want to help the Indian army to secure their positions immediately,” Tsering, a 28-year-old volunteer from Chushul told The Guardian. “We are carrying supplies to them, doing multiple rounds in a day, to ensure that the army doesn’t face too many problems.”
Border conflicts are a permanent fixture of India-China relations, as the countries do not have a marked border but rather the Line of Actual Control, created after the 1962 war between the nations. However, the tensions became more strained as a result of skirmishes between the countries' border forces starting in May.
The tension was further exacerbated by a violent clash between the two sides on 15 June at Galwan Valley in Ladakh in which 20 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of Chinese soldiers were killed.
In order to normalise the situation, the commanders of the regional forces, as well as diplomats from both sides, conducted a series of negotiations resulting in the troops of both countries returning to their initial positions.