20th May, 2022 Geography
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- India is closely monitoring the construction of a bridge by China on the Pangong Tso (lake) in eastern Ladakh, which is in “occupied territory”- Ministry of External Affairs.
- Pangong Tso is an endorheic saline lake spanning eastern Ladakh and West Tibet.
- It has a land-locked basin separated from the Indus River basin by a small elevated ridge.
- It is 134 km long and divided into five sublakes, called Pangong Tso, Tso Nyak, Rum Tso (twin lakes) and Nyak Tso.
- The lake, a glacial melt, has mountain spurs of the Chang Chenmo range jutting down, referred to as fingers.
Pangong Tso and LAC
- Pangong Tso is in disputed territory. The Line of Actual Control passes through the lake.
- Approximately 50% of the length of the overall lake lies within Tibet China, 40% in Ladakh India and the rest is disputed and is a de-facto buffer zone between India and China.
- An Inner Line Permit is required to visit the lake as it lies on the Sino-Indian Line of Actual Control.
- The lake is in the process of being identified under the Ramsar Convention as a wetland of international importance.
- This will be the first trans-boundary wetland in South Asia under the convention.