NEW DELHI: The Indian military has made efforts to hone the negotiating skills of soldiers mandated to communicate and hold bilateral talks with Chinese troops. This comes amid the increased interaction between soldiers from both countries and it is also expected to increase in the future.
According to a source, “training in negotiation technique is in its conceptual stage”, keeping in mind how the talks have gone at different levels of command so that our negotiating teams can handle it better.
The need arose after the Chinese side resorted to either stretching the meeting for long hours “to wear down the other side during the talks” to its advantage, or behaving erratically and raising the voice to play with the spirit of the Indian team. “This awareness will include soldiers who come into contact with PLA troops.” said the source.
The entire range of responses along the Line of Real Control (LAC) has been under consideration since the May 2020 stalemate. As reported by The Sunday Standard, Lt. Gen. MK Pande said in October: “Our strategic direction in terms of handling the situation on the LAC is to abide by mutually agreed upon protocols and agreements, and that has been our effort, regardless of action or response from the other side. As a result of what happened and what we need to do in the future, I think something is being looked at at a higher level. “
In addition, the Indian army has formalized a course on Tibetan language and culture to “properly merge its troops with the Tibetan people”. The course organized by the Indian military in association with the Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies (CIHCS) and the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, Sikkim, aims to make Indian soldiers understand the nuances of culture and to arm them with the language in order to that they can mix with the Tibetan population living on the Indian side of the LAC. It will distract people from Chinese propaganda, he said. There are people from the same tribes living on both sides of the ALC.
The need arose due to the increased frequency of meetings, talks and telephone communications between the two parties. Under the old agreements, nine Border Staff Meetings (BPMs) are held annually between countries on the occasion of ceremonies.
With the dead ends that have prevailed in eastern Ladakh since May 2020, there has been an increase in communication between the PLA and the Indian military in order to resolve the protracted tensions along the LAC which have led to Deadly duels in Galwan that claimed the lives of both sides.