New Delhi: In a first, India and China on Wednesday carried out a joint army exercise in eastern Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir, a move that comes amid hectic diplomatic manoeuvring between the two countries over a host of issues like Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and designation of Masood Azhar as a terrorist by the United Nations.
The army teams of India and China carried out rescue operations, evacuation and rendering of medical assistance in a simulated earthquake scenario.
Wednesday’s joint exercise was a sequel to the one held on 6 February at Chushul Garrison of Eastern Ladakh.
According to people aware of the matter, the exercise was then held in the Chinese side and this time in the Indian side along the Line of Actual Control.
The Indian team for the exercise was led by Brigadier R.S. Raman and that of the Chinese was led by Sr Col Fan Jun.
The exercise was a great success and has not only refined the drills that will be of help in the case of a natural calamity, but has also increased the level of trust and cooperation between the two forces along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh, the army said in a statement in New Delhi.
The joint exercise compliments Hand in Hand series of the India-China joint exercises and the effort of both the nations to enhance cooperation and maintain peace and tranquillity along the border areas of India and China, the statement added.
This year’s edition of “Hand in Hand” will be held at Aundh, near Pune in Maharashtra, from 15-27 November.