NEW DELHI: India is not stepping back to build its military strength in Ladakh after the deadly clash between the Indian Army and Chinese troops in Galwan Valley on June 15 where 20 soldiers were killed in a face-off with Chinese soldiers. Indian Air Force's (IAF) latest Apache attack choppers, upgraded Sukhoi Su-30 MKIS and MiG-29 fighter jets have been deployed over the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and additional troops rushed to Eastern Ladakh.
Apache helicopters are designed to carry out offensive missions at high altitude locations and the deployment of these helicopters in the sector is the greatest boost to the military. Sukhoi Su-30MKIs and Apache attack helicopters are patrolling on the borders and it sends out a strong message to China, especially a day after Modi's surprise visit to Ladakh. Helicopters are effective against armoured forces such as tanks and infantry vehicles and can be a game-changer with the ability to act rapidly at any spot. Also, the M-777 ultra-light howitzers, specially procured for mountain warfare, were airlifted forward for the benefit of Indian ground forces. The accurate artillery guns are capable of being deployed rapidly in difficult terrain as well.
News Agency PTI quoted that IAF is also making use of its Ilyushin-76 fleet to transport troops to various areas along the Line of Actual Control. Air Force has already deployed Sukhoi 30 MKI, Jaguar, and Mirage 2000 to important airbases including Leh and Srinagar. IAF has moved Apache attack choppers and Chinook heavy-lift helicopters to transport troops to various forward locations.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a surprise visit to Ladakh to review the security situation on the ground amid a border faceoff with China and progress in talks with the Chinese army. He interacted with the Indian Army, Air Force, and ITBP at a forward post in Nimu which is located at 11,000 feet. PM Modi also met the injured soldiers at the Military Hospital. While interacting with soldiers, Modi told soldiers that, "Modernisation of the armed forces is a priority and that the spending on border infrastructure has almost tripled." He further told that their courage would be "a source of inspiration for the times to come," and each and every Indian is proud of them.