The 2-month-old Chinese incursions into Indian territory in Eastern Ladakh has finally started coming to an end, with a Chinese spokesperson stating a few hours back that Chinese PLA troops have begun to withdraw from the region. Here are some of the important measures India took to make this happen:
Got France to advance the delivery of 6 Rafale jets — these are now expected to come to India by the end of July / beginning of August. Rafales have built-in Meteor BVRAAM (beyond visual range air-to-air missiles) with 120+ Km range, MICA-RF BVRAAM missiles with 80+ Km range and MICA-IR close combat missiles with 60+ Km range. They will also have air-to-ground Scalp missiles with a sated range of 250-km though media reports claim the weapon can go twice that distance, giving IAF the capability to hit targets inside Pakistan or Tibet (China), while still staying within Indian airspace.
Got Russia to expedite the delivery of the first S-400 Triumf air/missile defence system. Russia wanted to delay the delivery due to the Covid pandemic. The S-400 is capable of intercepting and destroying airborne targets at up to 400-km and can simultaneously engage up to six targets. Each S-400 unit comprises tracking and search radar systems, eight launchers, 112 guided missiles, and command and support vehicles.
Banned 59 Chinese Apps.
Started cancelling several governments contracts awarded to Chinese firms.
Ordered 21 MiG-29 fighter jets from Russia, plus upgrade of 59 of IAF’s existing MiG 29s.
Ordered 12 Sukhoi Su-30MKI multi-role long-range fighter/bombers from HAL, which makes them in technical collaboration with Russia.
Ordered 300 Nirbhay 1000-km range land-attack cruise missiles from DRDO.
Ordered 248 Astra Mark-I BVRAAM missiles from Bharat Dynamics Limited.
Ordered Pinaka multi-barrel rocket launch systems.
Moved aircraft, equipment and thousands of troops to Ladakh.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a surprise visit to Leh in Ladakh on July 3 to raise the spirits of Indian troops. He was accompanied by the Chief of Defence Staff and the Chief of the Army Staff. He also sent out a message to the world that the era of expansionism is over and expansionist forces are ultimately always defeated.
The army and air force chiefs also made separate visits to Ladakh.
Increased momentum of improving border roads; increased the budget by as much as four times.
On June 22, a week after the Galwan Valley clashes in Eastern Ladakh that resulted in the death of 20 Indian soldiers (including a Colonel) and 35-43 Chinese soldiers (including a senior officer), the US Secretary of State (foreign minister) Michael Pompeo called India’s Minister of External Affairs Dr. S. Jaishankar to discuss the border situation. Pompeo expressed the United States’ support to India in maintaining its territorial integrity.
India also applied massive diplomatic pressure on US lawmakers, including Senators and members of the House of Representatives.
The US deployed two aircraft carrier strike groups led by their nuclear-armed supercarriers USS Nimitz and USS Ronald Reagan to the South China Sea. On Sunday, the US Navy tweeted: Comprised of both Nimitz and Ronald Reagan Strike Groups, the Nimitz Carrier Strike Force celebrated #IndependenceDay with unmatched sea power while deployed to the South China Sea conducting dual carrier operations and exercises in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific. In addition, the USS Theodore Roosevelt and its strike group are operating in the Philippine Sea near the island of Guam. The three warships are accompanied by Navy cruisers, destroyers, fighter jets and other aircraft.
The US had not deployed an aircraft carrier group to the Indo-Pacific region during the 1962 Sino-Indian war, despite PM Nehru’s request to then US President John F. Kennedy.
The US Air Force also has four B-1B Lancer supersonic heavy bombers in Guam, which are a threat to China.
It is not necessary that the US military deployments to the Indo-Pacific region are a direct result of India’s diplomacy. It may be a political ploy by US President Donald Trump in the aftermath of his repeatedly blaming China for the Coronavirus pandemic.
Dr. Jaishankar also spoke with his counterparts in Japan, Germany, UK, France, Canada, Australia and Indonesia in the past week or so.
India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval (PM Modi’s most highly trusted foreign and national security policy advisor) had a 2-hour video call with China’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi, who is also one of the five State Councillors of China, a very important position in its government.