India is stepping up its military presence along the Himalayan border with China, moving another 50,000 troops as the nuclear rivals remain at odds.
China and India fought in the mountains along the disputed border in 2020. More than 20 soldiers died in the conflict.
Since April, India has already moved 200,000 soldiers and fighter jets to the border, according to sources referenced by Bloomberg, which added Beijing has pushed long-range artillery, tanks, anti-aircraft missiles and fighter jet squadrons.
The Daily Mail reported China to have been beefing up the area with “runways, bomb-proof bunkers for fighter jets, howitzers and outposts.”
At issue is the Line of Actual Control from Ladakh in the west to India’s eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh.
China says that it maintains sole ownership of the area in and near Nepal and Bhutan.
It’s not just the hotly disputed Ladakh region; India has increased its troop numbers at the country’s other borders with China, including along the southern Tibetan plateau, between Nepal and Bhutan.
The Indian Navy reportedly is also increasing its readiness and now has been deploying more ships among important sea lanes.
India had been directing a great deal of its attention on Pakistan. Now, India Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration has pivoted to addressing concerns involving Beijing.
The world’s leaders are watching as the tensions mount.
“Having so many soldiers on either side is risky when border management protocols have broken down,” said DS Hooda, a lieutenant general and former Northern Army commander in India, via Bloomberg.
“Both sides are likely to patrol the disputed border aggressively. A small local incident could spiral out of control with unintended consequences.”
The Indian Army and a Prime Minister’s Office representative did not respond to Bloomberg’s request for comment.