The Ministry of Defence on Friday said that assertion that Indian territory is up to Finger 4 in Pangong Tso area in Eastern Ladakh is categorically false. The ministry reiterated that India has not conceded any territory as a result of agreement with China.
"Even the Line of Actual Control (LAC), as per the Indian perception, is at Finger 8, not at Finger 4," the Ministry of Defence said. "India has persistently maintained right to patrol up to Finger 8, including in current understanding with China," it added.
According to the ministry, permanent posts of both sides at north bank of Pangong Tso are longstanding and well-established.
"Not conceded any territory, on the contrary, has enforced respect for LAC, prevented any unilateral change in the status quo," it said.
The clarification comes in the wake of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's charge that Defence minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday "sheepishly" made a statement on the LAC situation in the Parliament and it emerged that Indian troops are now going to be stationed at Finger 3.
He claimed that Finger 4 is India's territory and that is where "our post used to be".
"Now we have moved from Finger 4 to Finger 3. Why has Prime Minister Modi given up Indian territory to the Chinese. This is the question that needs to be answered by him and the Defence minister," he said.
Earlier on Thursday, Defence minister Rajnath Singh told Parliament that India and China have agreed for disengagement in eastern Ladakh. According to a statement made by Singh, the two Asian giants have agreed for disengagement in the North and South bank of Pangong lake in eastern Ladakh that mandates both sides to cease forward deployment of troops in a "phased, coordinated and verifiable" manner.
The implementation of disengagement agreement, he said, started Wednesday in North and South Bank of Pangong lake.
The border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted in May last year following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas and both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry even as the two sides continued military and diplomatic talks. India lost 20 soldiers in violent clash in Galwan valley in June while China lost around 45 troops.