Ongoing infrastructure build-up on its side of the place near the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, China is making a new bridge on Pangong Tso which shall give an additional axis to place troops faster between the north and south banks of the lake, and closer to the LAC.
Sources stated that the bridge is being built up more than 20 km east of Finger 8 on the north bank of the lake – India states Finger 8 designates the LAC. The bridge site is only east of Khurnak Fort in Rutog county where the PLA has frontier bases. There is a frontier defense company at Khurnak Fort, and a water squadron further east at Banmozhang.
Since the military standoff started in May 2020, India, and China both have not only worked to enhance existing infrastructure but have even constructed many new roads, bridges, landing strips along the entire frontier.
Pangong Tso which is an endorheic lake is 135 km long, of which more than two-thirds are under the control of China. Khurnak Fort which is close to where China is making the new bridge is near the halfway mark of the boomerang-shaped lake.
Historically it is a part of India but since 1958 Khurnak Fort has been under Chinese control. From Khurnak Fort, the LAC is greatly west, with India claiming it at Finger 8 and China claiming it at Finger 4.
The north and south banks of the lake were some of the several friction points that surfaced after the start of the standoff. before India and China pulled lower back troops from the north and south banks in February 2021, the vicinity had visible massive mobilization and the two sides even deployed tanks, slightly a few hundred meters aside in a few places.
Toward the last week of August 2020, India outflanked China to get the previously unoccupied heights of the Kailash range at the south bank of the lake.
Indian troops located themselves on the peaks out there, which included Magar Hill, Gurung Hill, Rezang La, Rechin La, and this permitted them to control the strategic Spanggur Gap — it can be further used for launching an offensive, as in 1962 China had done — and even gave them a view of the PLA garrison at Moldo.
Troops from both nations stayed on these heights throughout the months of harsh winter. The importance of these positions was one of the key factors that forced China to negotiate a pullback.
Both nations accepted a pullback from the north bank of the lake and locates it on the Kailash Range in the Chushul sub-sector south of Pangong Tso.
Sources stated that the new bridge that is built by China will permit it to mobilize its troops faster in this area, hoping to avoid a repeat of what happened in August 2020.
China has been growing infrastructure in the whole area since the beginning of the standoff — it is nevertheless to be resolved. The widening of roads, construction of new roads and bridges, new bases, airstrips, improve landing bases, etc aren’t restrained to the eastern Ladakh area, however, are going on across the 3 sectors of India-China boundary.
India too has been enhancing its infrastructure within the border areas. last 12 months, the Border Roads agency completed greater than 100 projects in border regions, most of the people of which have been close to the border with China. India is likewise improving its surveillance along the entire 3488-km boundary and has been building new airstrips and landing areas.
Both nations have over 50,000 troops respectively in the areas along the Ladakh frontier.