The Indian Army has released photos of its soldiers playing a game of cricket in eastern Ladakh near the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with China. A group of soldiers from Patiala Brigade Trishul division took part in the cricket match which was organised in Galwan valley, the same place where India and China have been engaged in a tense military standoff since 2020.
The competition was organised by the Patiala Brigade Trishul division in an extremely high altitude area in sub-zero temperatures. The match took place even as Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met the Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang in New Delhi on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers meet.
While the exact location of where the game was played has not been disclosed by the Indian Army, satellite images show that the location may be less than 5 kilometres away from where the deadly clash took place between soldiers from the two armies in June 2020.
On June 15, 2020, Ladakh’s Galwan valley witnessed a violent clash between Indian and Chinese soldiers. Tensions had been high on the Line of Actual Control for some time and in June, the Chinese soldiers started to aggressively patrol the area and cross over to the Indian side.
A buffer zone was created between the two armies after the soldiers came eyeball to eyeball along the LAC. However, Indian troops saw a Chinese camp in the area and went to inspect it. Soon a clash erupted between the two sides. On the night of June 15, a large group of Chinese soldiers attacked Indian troops with clubs, nail-studded sticks and rods
Even as no shots were fired by the two sides but fist fights and other sharp materials were used. This resulted in 20 soldiers of the Indian Army being martyred. Scores of Chinese soldiers, too, were killed during the deadly skirmish.
Top Indian and Chinese commanders engaged in talks after the clash to defuse the situation. Various flag meetings were also conducted between the two countries to resolve the dispute and take measures to not let it escalate further.