Scuffles broke out between Indian and Chinese soldiers along the major Pangong lake on the crucial border in Ladakh as Chinese troops reportedly attempted to make incursions into Indian territory. This led to stone pelting resulting in minor injuries to soldiers from both sides.
Tension in Doklam plateau in Sikkim has been running high for over 50 days now due to the standoff between Chinese and Indian forces as Indian troops thwarted attempts by the Chinese army to construct a road in the area claimed by Bhutan, an ally of India.
At least 15 soldiers of the People's Liberation Army were accused of trying to enter Indian territory on Tuesday, 15 August – India's independence day – crossing the de facto border known as the Line of Actual Control (LAC). Despite repeated warnings from Indian forces, the Chinese troops continued their incursion, it was reported.
"The Chinese patrol refused to move when the Indian side first showed banners that they were in Indian territory, as per the settled drill. Heated arguments took place between the two sides leading to a scuffle in which troops punched at each other and then finally stones were thrown. Stone pelting took place during both face-offs," an Indian government official told the Hindustan Times on condition of anonymity.
Following the brief encounter, Chinese military officials sought a flag meeting with their Indian counterparts to ease the situation.
When asked about the incident, Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hu Chunying said: "I am not aware of the information. The Chinese side is committed to peace and tranquillity of the China-India border. We urge the Indian side abide by the LAC and relevant conventions between the two sides."