20:15 GMT31 October 2020
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    Indian and Chinese troops have been embroiled in a tense standoff along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh region since late April. The Indian army is preparing for a long haul through winters, and the government is trying to reinforce infrastructure in the border areas through extensive road and bridge-building.

    Amid the ongoing border standoff in eastern Ladakh, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday said it seems like China is creating a border dispute as part of a specific mission.

    The minister made the remark as he inaugurated 44 bridges made by the Border Roads Organisation (BRO) across seven states and union territories via video conferencing and dedicated the bridges to the nation.

    Speaking on the occasion, Singh said "everyone is aware of the conditions created on our northern and eastern borders. First by Pakistan, and now also by China, as if a border dispute is being created as part of a mission".

    He further said: “We share a border of about seven thousand kilometers with these countries, where the tension will remain in the coming days.”

    Singh said these bridges will usher in a new era of connectivity and development, especially in the far-flung areas of the country.

    “With the construction of these bridges, our western, northern and north-east areas will have great facilities in military and civil transport. Our armed forces are deployed in the large numbers in areas where transport is not available throughout the year,” Singh said, adding that these roads are not only for strategic needs, but also to ensure equal participation in the development of the entire nation.

    Over the last few months, India and China have been involved in tense military face-offs, with both the sides accusing each other of crossing the loosely demarcated Line of Actual Control (LAC).

    Earlier in mid-June, 20 Indian soldiers were killed in one of the most violent clashes between the two nations at the border in decades.

    The situation along the border with China remains tense as the two sides have been involved in military commander level talks in order to find a peaceful resolution to the standoff.


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