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20 ITBP men honoured for ladakh role: ‘They fought the whole night, gave befitting reply to PLA stone-pelters’

The ITBP statement mentioned that its personnel effectively used shields to protect themselves, and responded fiercely to advancing Chinese PLA troops, bringing the situation under control amidst "fierce" face offs and skirmishes.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
Updated: August 15, 2021 7:41:01 am
Chinese troops dismantling their bunkers at Pangong Tso region, in Ladakh along the India-China border. (Photo: Indian Army/AP)

Among the 1,380 service medals announced for Central and state police forces on the eve of the Independence Day, 20 have been given to personnel of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police for putting up a brave front in clashes with Chinese troops — during the standoff in eastern Ladakh that began in May last year.

The ITBP statement mentioned that its personnel effectively used shields to protect themselves, and responded fiercely to advancing Chinese PLA troops, bringing the situation under control amidst “fierce” face offs and skirmishes. “With highest order of professional skills, ITBP troops fought shoulder-to-shoulder and also brought the injured (Army) troops to the rear…even when the ITBP troops fought the whole night, they received minimum casualties by giving befitting reply to the stone pelters of the PLA.”

“Out of the 20, eight personnel of the ITBP have been awarded the PMG for their gallant act, meticulous planning and tactical insightfulness and for defending the motherland in Galwan Nalla on June 15. Six personnel have been awarded with the PMG for gallant action during violent face off on May 18 in the Finger IV area while the rest six have been decorated with the same medal for their gallant action near Hot Springs in Ladakh on the same day,” a senior official said.

The 1,380 medals include two President’s Police Medals for Gallantry (PPMGs), 628 Police Medals for Gallantry (PMGs), 88 President’s Police Medals for distinguished service and 662 police medals for meritorious service.

With 257 medals, including 1 PPMG and 256 PMGs, the Jammu and Kashmir Police won the maximum number of gallantry medals this year, followed by CRPF with 1 PPMG and 150 PMG.

ITBP’s primary mandate is to guard the 3488-km border with China. It received a total of 23 medals this year.

ITBP said its personnel gave a “determined standoff for nearly 17 to 29 hours in certain places, during the intervening night of June 15 and June 16”. “Due to the high-altitude training and survival experience of the force at the icy Himalayan deployments, ITBP troops kept the PLA troops at bay and due to the all out and befitting response of ITBP troops at several fronts, many areas were safeguarded.”

Last year, there were several clashes between Indian and Chinese troops at the various friction points in eastern Ladakh, where Chinese troops had crossed the Line of Actual Control to the Indian side. The clashes on June 15, 2020 in Galwan Valley had left 20 Indian and at least four Chinese troops dead.

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