Op Snow Leopard: Inside story of how Army reclaimed heights in eastern Ladakh

  • | Wednesday | 16th September, 2020

New Delhi: The Indian Army bolstered its dominance over a number of strategic heights overlooking key Chinese-held positions around Pangong lake area in eastern Ladakh last week even as brigade commanders and commanding officers of the two militaries held talks to cool tensions in the region. The Indian Army waited for three months of planning before it executed ‘Operation Snow Leopard’ to control key heights along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.

New Delhi: The Indian Army bolstered its dominance over a number of strategic heights overlooking key Chinese-held positions around Pangong lake area in eastern Ladakh last week even as brigade commanders and commanding officers of the two militaries held talks to cool tensions in the region. The Indian Army waited for three months of planning before it executed ‘Operation Snow Leopard’ to control key heights along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.

Sources told that Indian Army initially waited for China to move back but when that did not happen, Army Chief General MM Narawane and Northern Army Commander Lt Gen YK Joshi cleared the crucial operation.

>> And after months of planning, the Indian Army finally went on to occupy strategic heights identified along the LAC under ‘Op Snow Leopard’.

>> These heights and features have given India not just tactical but also strategic advantage on the ground and in talks between the two sides. The Army Special Forces now command several features and flanks at multiple friction points.

>> Under ‘Op Snow Leopard’, teams of high altitude mountain warfare specialists were prepared.

 

>> Each team was tasked to occupy height and secure sustainable supply line.

>> In a swift operation, the Army took control of posts on south and north bank of Pangong Tso and at other locations in eastern Ladakh to keep a hawk-eye vigil on Chinese-held positions.

The Indian Army has occupied several key heights in the strategically located Rezang-La and Reqin-La areas on the southern bank of the lake since the end of August. With the Army occupying key heights, it now has the strength to restore status quo ante at the LAC if talks do not succeed. The Army deployment is effective and dominating not only at Demchok in south but also Depsang and DBO backed by Indian Air Force.

The border situation deteriorated yet again after China unsuccessfully attempted to occupy Indian territory in the southern bank of Pangong lake on the intervening night of August 29 and 30. India occupied a number of strategic heights on the southern bank of Pangong lake and strengthened its presence in Finger 2 and Finger 3 areas in the region to thwart any Chinese actions. China strongly objected to India`s move. However, India maintained that the heights are on its side of the LAC.

Following China`s fresh attempts to change the status quo in the southern bank of Pangong lake, India has further bolstered its military presence in the region. The ball is now in China’s court. Chinese corp commander has still not reverted on day, date and time for next round of talks.



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