Three Indian soldiers, Colonel B Santosh Babu, Havildar Palani and Sepoy Ojha, were killed in a “violent face-off” on Monday night along with other soldiers with Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Ladakh, in a massive escalation in the middle of efforts to defuse weeks of tension at the border. India retaliated and there were casualties on both sides, said the army. Army sources say the soldiers were not shot but were killed in a physical fight on Indian Territory that involved stones and batons.
The foreign ministry said the clashes happened “as a result of an attempt by the Chinese side to unilaterally change the status quo there”. Major Generals of both sides met to de-escalate tension after the clashes, according to an official statement. This is the first violent incident involving fatalities since 1975 between India and China, who fought a border war in 1962.