India incursion and Chinese standoff at Dolam, Bhutan

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"the engineer"
Hot take from India.
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Article is really sad. None of the three reasons are that interesting IMO.
1) drone hard to come by for India... If only they build their own like China or us, one drone is nothing.
2) author thinks China is stupid for not knowing drone is there. Wut! Its not Afghanistan!
3) this drone is ancient technology. He even said not top Israeli tech when they imported it.. Back in 2005. That is literally 3 generations of drone tech. What can China possibly learn from it? Other than India still use 10 yr old tech.


It's spin to cover-up the embarrassment that India has a high number of accidents with their hardware in general. Remember how India was in panic that they saw objects hovering in the night sky for several days believing they were Chinese spy drones when it was just two other planets in the solar system.

What China should do is publish in a newspaper that India shot down their own drone thinking it was Chinese.


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India on Thursday confirmed that one of its Israeli made Heron drones had crossed the Line of Actual in the Sikkim sector and crashed in Chinese territory ahead of North Sikkim following a “technical problem”. Over a hotline, India has requested China to return it.
That doesn't sound very realistic.


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  • #616
Even if it gets returned, you can bet the PLA's already looked at it thoroughly.

Yup it is intelligence windfall I would delay as long as I can and analyze every part of it to design countermeasure or better still spoof it fed it fake images.
I doubt it is malfunction It was an spying mission for sure
Anyway here is Henri K take I don't agree with his assessment. He is believing too much in Indian press

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After the recent confrontation between India and China in the border region of Doklam, which resulted in the withdrawal of the Indian army in August, a new local incident adds a grain of sand again in bilateral relations around this disputed region. Indeed, a Heron reconnaissance drone acquired by the Indian army has crashed recently on the other side of the line of Active Control (LAC), within Chinese territory.

The crash was first revealed by the headquarters of the command of the Western theater of operations, the Chinese army, and
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The statement said an "unmanned Indian machine made an intrusion into Chinese airspace before crashing," and "Chinese border guards proceeded to identify the aircraft."

It should be noted that the communication went through a lower channel, at the local level of the Chinese army, and not through a national channel such as the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Ministry of Defense for example. It is therefore assumed that the Chinese authorities voluntarily wanted to control the extent of this incident. Note also that the text mentioned neither the exact location nor the date nor is it known which model drone has entered the interior of China.

And it's on the Indian side that we finally find more details - the press office of the Indian Ministry of Defense quickly issued
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the same day, "in response to the Xinhua article":

"An Indian UAV which was a regular training mission in the Indian territory lost contact with the ground control of the LAC in the Sikkim Sector. As per standard protocol, the Indian border security staff immediately alerted their Chinese counterparts to locate the UAV. In response, the Chinese side reverted with the rental details of the UAV. The exact cause of the incident is under investigation. The matter is being dealt with by the India-China border areas. "

Col Aman Anand

The text admits that an Indian drone passed to the other side of the LAC, in the region of Sikkim, following a technical problem that made him lose contact with the ground station during a usual training mission . The Indian border guards immediately informed their Chinese colleagues, who gave details of the location of the drone in return.

Additional elements have also been unveiled by the Indian media - we learn for example that the crash took place a week ago near the disputed region of Doklam, and it is a drone Heron Israeli builder Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) acquired by the Indian Army in the 2000s'.

"The communication between the drone and the ground control station was interrupted and then restored before being lost again," said a senior Indian government official, "The drone could not be controlled and finished its shopping in the Chumbi Valley ".

The Heron drone in question was then flying 25 km from the effective control line on the Indian side when the "technical problems" arose after taking off from an airbase located in the Siliguri corridor.

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The Chumbi Valley and the Siliguri Corridor

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Another Heron-1S drone from the Indian Air Force crashed in 2014

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, and that its digital analytics system (DAS) has already been shipped to Israel for investigation. Negotiations are currently under way to repatriate the wreckage of the craft.

As for the possibility of loss of sensitive data, sources close to the record seem to emphasize the fact that the drone does not have its own storage system, and the Indian army also claims that the machine "was not on mission monitoring ".

The Heron is a so-called High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) drone of the IAI which made its inaugural flight in 1994. With a maximum take-off weight of 1,150 kg, it can remain up to 52 hours in flight at a ceiling of 10,000 meters. Many countries are users of this MALE model including France with the modified version known as EADS Harfang .

So here we find an LOS tactical reconnaissance drone used by the Indian army to monitor its mountainous borders with China, like the
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for the RECON missions in the China Sea. and the South China Sea, except that the latter has a satellite communication link which allows it to go beyond a radius of 250 km.

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In the center, the Chinese reconnaissance HALE drone BZK-005, designed by Beihang University, a Chinese equivalent of IAI Heron.

To be continued.


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  • #617
Well what you get after all the hoopla died down
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NEW DELHI: Around 1,600-1,800 Chinese troops have now virtually established a permanent presence in the Doklam+ area, near the
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trijunction, with the construction of two helipads, upgraded roads, scores of pre-fabricated huts, shelters and stores to withstand the freezing winter in the high-altitude region.

Indian security establishment sources said while India "achieved its strategic objective" of not letting China extend its existing road in Doklam (or the Dolam plateau) southwards towards the Jampheri ridge, the fallout has been "the almost permanent stationing of People's Liberation Army (PLA) troops in the region+ ".

"Earlier, PLA patrols would come to Doklam, which is disputed between China and Bhutan, between April-May and October-November every year to mark their presence and lay claim to the area before going back," said a source.

"Now, after the 73-day eyeball-to-eyeball troop confrontation at Doklam between India and China ended on August 28, the PLA troops have stayed put in what we consider to be Bhutanese territory for the first time this winter. But the status quo prevails at the earlier face-off site," he added.


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I had wanted to say this a while but wasn't too sure... if we don't name this thread Donglang then can we at least name it Doklam with the correct spelling? Can someone help change it? Or was there any good reason why we don't rename it?


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  • #619
Well the built up is continuing unabated into the winter. NOw instead of prefab barrack they erected permanent barrack with other supporting infrastructure
The satellite images confirm that work is progressing at a feverish pace even in the winter months. An additional infantry mortar position has been created in the second half of November. A comparison of November and December images also suggests that the troop buildup increased at the end of November.
At Doklam, Chinese troop levels rise at feverish pace even as temperatures dip
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12 December, 2017
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Stand off area as of 10 December, 2017 | Digital Globe, Vinayak Bhat
Troop buildup near Doklam increased in November-end, fresh satellite images show; additional mortar positions, a gun position, vehicles, troop accommodation now visible.

A Chinese buildup of troops and military infrastructure near the contentious Doklam plateau has gained pace in November, with fresh satellite images showing new mortar positions, hardening of gun positions and evidence that more than 5,000 troops could be deployed within 5-10 km of the conflict point.

The buildup can be seen in latest satellite imagery of 3 December that has been accessed by ThePrint. The deployment seems to have increased since the resolution in August when both Indian and Chinese troops backed off from a road construction site in Doklam after a tense standoff that lasted more than two months.

The significant buildup is visible at several locations southwest of Yadong town, all within a 5-10 km aerial distance from the spot where Indian and Chinese troops had faced off earlier this year. This presence of almost nine battalions is in addition to the troops that China has deployed just 50 km behind in the Chumbi valley, as reported by ThePrint in October.

Over 300 heavy duty trucks, fresh tunneling into the mountains to set up gun positions and creation of several buildings to accommodate troops indicate a Chinese resolve to stay ready for action even through the winter.

Satellite images confirm that work is progressing at a feverish pace even in the winter. The images show at least nine three-storey buildings that are occupied and almost 300 large vehicles, suggesting that almost one division of troops are located in areas ahead of Yadong town.

Infrastructure developments
The People’s Liberation Army or PLA continues to develop infrastructure on a large scale in this area south and southwest of Yadong town.

The platoon and company posts have accommodation for more than a battalion of troops. The single-storey barracks have been replaced by massive three-storey buildings with possible underground and/or camouflaged parking.

Infrastructure developments | Vinayak Bhat
The signal centre has been greatly improved with an earth receiving station, four large dish antennae, two huge aerials and a solid-wall fencing. It also has a slightly raised platform, possibly for future deployment of vehicle-based radars

Roads and tracks are being widened and developed all around. Large cranes, earth moving equipment and construction material can be seen almost everywhere. Certain areas defiladed from Indian defences are being leveled, probably for future constructions.

Troop buildup
There is also a massive buildup of troops just below the conflict area of Doklam. A large number of vehicles are seen parked near the riverside. In some areas, vehicles are seen hidden under camouflage nets. A number of tents have also been observed under camouflage nets.

A number of vehicles, including many small vehicles, are seen around the three-storey buildings, suggesting these buildings are also occupied.

PLA troop build up | Vinayak Bhat
Improvement of defences
The satellite images suggest that a continuous improvement of defensive positions has been on since June 2017. All previous posts and also the new positions have been connected with a maze of well dug communication trenches.

Improvement of defences | Vinayak Bhat
Most of the important positions have been afforded the protection of wire fences. Some posts can be seen to have infantry mortars positions.

At two places, mountain sides have been cut large enough to make gun positions, possibly for howitzers and/or multi-barrel rocket launchers (MBRLs).

Hardening gun positions
The old gun position has been improved to harden the shelters for guns. The shelters have further been provided with a layer of compressed earthen protection. Moving into the gun pit or scooting from the gun position would now be very easy. A second position is being constructed, albeit at a slow pace, possibly not to give out the direction of fire.

The satellite images confirm that work is progressing at a feverish pace even in the winter months. An additional infantry mortar position has been created in the second half of November. A comparison of November and December images also suggests that the troop buildup increased at the end of November.
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