The visit comes more than a month after the border row with China, in which 20 Indian army personnel were killed.

Rajnath singh with a green and white kurtha smiles as he sits in front of a microphone against a blue background. Another man can be seen in the background.
news Defence Friday, July 17, 2020 - 11:09

Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh reached Leh in Ladakh on Friday morning to study the security scenario more than a month after a border row with China had killed 20 Indian soldiers.

He will carry out a comprehensive review of the security scenario in the region on a day-long visit.

Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat and Army chief Gen MM Naravane are accompanying Minister Singh on the visit.

The Defence Minister is set to visit Stakna and Lukung forward areas.

His trip comes days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's surprise visit to Ladakh on July 3 during which he also addressed troops and signalled the country's firmness in dealing with the India-China border row.

Minister Singh was originally scheduled to visit Ladakh on July 3 but the trip was deferred.

Indian and Chinese troops were locked in a bitter standoff in multiple locations in eastern Ladakh for over eight weeks since May 5.

The tension escalated manifold after the violent clashes in Galwan Valley in which 20 Indian Army personnel were killed.

However, following a series of diplomatic and military talks, the two sides began a mutual disengagement process on July 6 and withdrew troops from most of the friction points.

On Thursday, the Indian Army said that China and India are committed to "complete disengagement" of troops, and the process is "intricate" that requires "constant verification". This was after the fourth round of marathon military talks for further de-escalation of tension in eastern Ladakh.

Separately, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said that there is absolutely no change in India's position on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) and any "unilateral attempts" to change the status quo are not acceptable to it.

At an online media briefing, MEA Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said senior commanders of the Indian Army and the Chinese PLA reviewed the progress of implementation of the ongoing disengagement process and discussed further steps to ensure "complete disengagement at the earliest".

The formal process of disengagement of troops began on July 6, a day after a nearly two-hour telephonic conversation between National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on ways to bring down tension in the area. Doval and Wang are designated Special Representatives for boundary talks.

(With PTI input)

Watch: Minister Rajnath Singh's visit to Leh

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