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India deploys MARCOS naval commandos in eastern Ladakh

The government has deployed the Marine Commandos (MARCOS) of the Indian Navy in the Pangong lake area in eastern Ladakh. Indian Air Forces Garud commandos and Indian Army para special forces are already stationed in the conflict zone for more than six months. India and China are engaged in a border standoff in the Himalayan region since April-May over the infiltration by the Chinese army in multiple Indian territories including finger area, Galwan Valley and Kongrung Nala. Tensions escalated after 20 Indian soldiers were killed in a violent clash with Chinese troops in June.

Reports said the deployment of the MARCOS in the region is to enhance integration of the three services- Indian Air Forces Garud commandos, Indian Army para special forces and Marine Commandos. This is also to provide the naval commandos exposure to extreme cold weather conditions.  

Reports also said the Marine commandos will also get new boats to carry out operations in the lake along with the existing infrastructure. Special forces like Para Special Forces and Secretariat’s Special Frontier Force have been carrying out special operations in Eastern Ladakh for a long time. During the early days of conflict with China, the Indian Air Force’s Garud Special Forces along with their Igla shoulder-fired air defence systems moved to strategic heights on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) to monitor any fighter aircraft of the enemy which may have tried to violate Indian air space.

The special troops of both Army and Air force have been deployed in the Himalayan region for more than six months now. On August 29-30, India had taken pre-emptive action and used the special forces to occupy hilltops on the strategic heights along the Line of Actual Control to prevent the Chinese forces from doing so. China has also maintained special troops on their side of the LAC.

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