Bengaluru: While tensions escalate at the borders, Indian Army has lent a helping hand to Chinese citizens stranded at northern Sikkim. 

They had lost their way at an altitude of 17,500 feet,"

In a splendid move, the soldiers, who "extended a helping hand" also offered them food and warm clothes to protect them from the harsh climate in the area.

"Realising danger to the lives of the Chinese citizens which included two men and one woman in sub-zero temperatures, the soldiers of Indian Army immediately reached out and provided medical assistance including oxygen, food and warm clothes to protect them from the vagaries of extreme altitude and harsh climatic conditions, " a press release said. 

"The Indian troops also gave them appropriate guidance to reach their destination after which they moved back. The Chinese citizens expressed their gratitude to India and the Indian Army for their prompt assistance," added the release. 

Meanwhile, Defence minister Rajnath Singh has clearly conveyed to his Chinese counterpart General Wei Fenghe that China must strictly respect the Line of Actual Control(LAC) and not make attempts to unilaterally change its status quo, asserting India is determined to protect its sovereignty and territorial integrity, officials said on Saturday (September 5).

In the first highest-level face-to-face contact between the two sides after border tension erupted in eastern Ladakh in early May, Singh and Wei met for two hours and 20 minutes in Moscow on Friday evening on the sidelines of a meeting of the defence ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO).

Officials said Singh conveyed to his Chinese counterpart that the current situation should be handled responsibly and that neither side should take any further action that could either complicate the situation or escalate matters in the border areas.

He told Wei that the actions by the Chinese troops, including amassing a large number of troops, their aggressive behaviour and attempts to unilaterally alter the status quo were in violation of the bilateral agreements, the officials said.