Jammu, Sept 16: Asserting that they were geared up for a prolonged stand-off against the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the Indian Army on Wednesday said they were ready to face the coming winters with strong operational preparedness in place.
Defence sources said here that altitudes in Ladakh range from High to Super High Altitude and there is a lot of snowfall, as after the month of November, up to 40 feet snow is experienced.
“Coupled with this, temperature dipping down to minus 30-40 degrees is a usual phenomenon. Wind chill factor makes matters further worse for the troops,” they added.
India is a peace-loving country and wishes to have good relations with its neighbours, they said, adding that the country always prefers to resolve issues through dialogue and talks are in progress to resolve the issue of borders with China in Eastern Ladakh.
However, at military level, it is well-prepared for the prolonged stand off.
Sources said the roads also get closed due to the snow. But despite all this, most encouraging part for India is that the Indian soldiers have a huge experience of winter warfare and are psychologically tuned to operate at short notice.
”While this fact is known to the world, the operational logistics capabilities are hardly known. Chinese media reports that India’s Operational Logistics is not geared up adequately and will not be able to fight through winters effectively, can best be attributed to ignorance,” they said.
The Defence sources further said that Indian Army is fully prepared and more than capable for fighting a full-fledged war, even in winters in Eastern Ladakh.
”Logistic capability relates to mobility, habitat and billeting, quality services from health, special rations, repair and recovery, heating systems, high quality weapons, ammunition, quality clothing, and so on,” said the sources.
While much of this capability existed earlier and troops could simply plug and play, a lot has also been boosted since May this year, when China showed it’s first signs of aggression, they added.
It is important to understand that the Army has experience of Siachen, where conditions are much more demanding than the frontiers with China, said the sources.
”Traditionally, there were two routes for moving into Ladakh, that is through Zojila and Rohtang Passes. Recently, India commissioned the third road from Darcha to Leh, which is much shorter distance wise and less prone to closure.
”Modern snow clearing equipment has also been placed on these routes to keep them open beyond November, thus giving us more time for daily maintenance of the troops,” they added.
”Compared to Indian troops that are battle hardened physically and psychologically, Chinese troops are mostly from urban areas and not used to hardships or prolonged deployment under field conditions.
”These worries have been percolating the minds of Chinese troops and is visible in Chinese media,” claimed the sources.