India has deployed US-made weaponry along China border, which is recently acquired from the country to bolster capabilities amid ongoing faceoff with China in Ladakh. The weapons have been acquired in the past few years as defence ties between India and US have strengthened due to rising concerns about Chinese assertiveness.

According to a report in Bloomberg, India has deployed US-manufactured Chinook helicopters, ultra-light towed howitzers and rifles as well as domestically made supersonic cruise missiles and a new-age surveillance system along areas bordering eastern Tibet.

The report quoted Eastern Army Commander Lieutenant General Manoj Pande saying that boots, armour, artillery and air support were combined to make the force ‘agile, lean and mean so that we can employ faster.’

India and China are engaged in talks to disengage the forces and the ongoing standoff in Eastern Ladakh. Recently in October, the two countries held thirteenth round of Corps Commander-level talks in Moldo that lasted for around eight-and-a-half hours, and focused at discussions on resolving the military standoff between armies of the two countries in the Eastern Ladakh sector.

The report added that in spite of talks, they are yet to agree on pulling back from a key flashpoint in another border area near the disputed area of Kashmir.

India’s deployments show a frustration with the lack of progress on talks with China, Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan, Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy and Technology at ORF said. “That we are looking at a second winter engaged at the border explains why India needs to work on building its capabilities and infrastructure at the border and source more equipment from partners like the US,” she told Bloomberg.

The report said that fresh forces have been deployed in the border with China, where a formation of least 30,000 troops have been deployed over the past year.

Newly raised Indian Army aviation brigade, around 300 km south of Tawang, is a critical component of India’s new offensive plan on the border. The brigade is equipped with Chinook helicopters, which can ferry US-made light howitzers and troops quickly across mountains.

It also has Israeli-made unmanned aerial vehicles that relay real-time pictures of the adversary round the clock, the report said.

Meanwhile, engineers in India are also digging the world’s longest two-lane tunnel (13,000 feet) above sea level and runs underneath a critical mountain pass, making access to the disputed border easier.