The vigilant Indian Air Force (IAF) mobilised its fighter planes on to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh after the Chinese military choppers were spotted flying close to the boundary that currently serves as the border between India and China.
The incident which occurred last week is seen as a deliberate attempt by China to keep the Indian security forces preoccupied as sources revealed that the Chinese helicopters did not cross the LAC into the Indian territory.
This is the third instance of such ploy by China in the last few days. On May 5, the soldiers of its People's Liberation Army (PLA) had come to blows with the troops of the Indian Army in eastern Ladakh as well in the upper reaches of north Sikkim.
IAF's swift response to China
Reports have it that the IAF swung into action within minutes of finding out that China has scrambled choppers along the border in Ladakh. "The Chinese military helicopters were flying very close to the Line of Actual Control. After their movement was picked up, the Indian Air Force fighter jets flew patrols in the area," government sources were quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
This is the first time in many years that India responded to the Chinese attempts to violate airspace. The development comes at a time when an increase in patrols of Pakistan Air Force's F-16S and F-17S jets has been noticed by the Indian security establishment along the eastern border of the two nations.
The IAF has two major bases in the Union Territory of Ladakh - the Leh airbase and the Thoise airbase.
Scuffle between Indian, Chinese soldiers in Sikkim
Soldiers of the two nuclear-armed neighbors were involved in a heated face-off along the India-China border in Sikkim. The tense confrontation between the world's two largest armies took place near the Naku La sector, at a height of over 5,000 meters.
At least four Indian soldiers and seven Chinese soldiers were reportedly injured in the scuffle between 150 personnel.
In a separate incident on the same day, several Indian and Chinese army troops clashed near the northern bank of the Pangong Lake in Ladakh.