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  • Be N By IAS, Delhi
  • 10, Feb 2021
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For : GS-2: International Relations


China and India have agreed to return to the pre-April 2020 positions in eastern Ladakh along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), according to the latest disengagement plan being implemented on the ground.


India and China have been engaged in a face-off in various pockets in eastern Ladakh since April last year after China stopped Indian patrols in the Finger area of Pangong Tso.

Finger 4: The troops have not been able to patrol beyond Finger 4 since the last week of April 2020 after China had ingressed about 8 km. Earlier, the troops could patrol up to Finger 8.

Other Conflict Area: The other areas where the buildup continues are the

  • Depsang plains,
  • Galwan,
  • Gogra-Hot Springs and
  • South bank of Pangong.


  • India v. China: The agreement effectively means that China will vacate the Finger area on the north bank of Pangong Tso (lake).
    • India will have to climb down from the advantageous position it has taken on the southern side of the lake.
  • Depsang and Charding Ninglung Nallah (CNN) junction in Demchok sector are not part of the current disengagement plan and will be discussed in the next meeting.
  • Consensus on ninth round talks: The official said efforts to implement the consensus reached after the ninth round of the Corps Commander level talks on January 24 have picked up in the past two days.
  • Pre-April 2020 status: “The ground commanders are meeting twice a day and we are hopeful of achieving a pre-April 2020 status in all sectors.”
    • Reduction of troops will be visible on the ground in the next two or three days.
  • Approved by the Government: “After the Corps Commanders meeting, the disengagement plan was approved by the government.
  • Simultaneous withdrawal: There will be simultaneous withdrawal on both the banks of Pangong Tso. In the north bank, India will move back to DS Post where the troops had earlier started their patrols.


Not only troops but mechanised armoured elements and temporary structures, such as tents and camps, will also be removed.
The Southern bank, where Indian troops are in a dominant position since August 2020, is a big pressure point for the Chinese.”


  • In the Ladakhi language, Pangong means extensive concavity, and Tso is lake in Tibetan.
  • Pangong Tso is a long narrow, deep, endorheic (landlocked) lake situated at a height of more than 14,000 ft in the Ladakh Himalayas.
  • The western end of Pangong Tso lies 54 km to the southeast of Leh.
  • The brackish water lake freezes over in winter, and becomes ideal for ice skating and polo.
  • It is not a part of the Indus river basin area. It has a land-locked basin separated from the Indus River basin by a small elevated ridge,
  • An Inner Line Permit is required to visit the lake as it lies on the Sino-Indian Line of Actual Control.
  • The lake is in the process of being identified under the Ramsar Convention as a wetland of international importance. This will be the first trans-boundary wetland in South Asia under the convention.

Source: The Hindu


Q. Which of the following is/are correct regarding Pangong Tso lake?

  1. This is the first trans-boundary wetland in South Asia under the Ramsar convention.
  2. An Inner Line Permit is required to visit the lake.

Select the correct answer using the code below.

  • a) 1 Only
  • b) 2 Only
  • c) Both 1 and 2
  • d) None of the above