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The India Army plays ball with the Chinese army
September 16, 2005 00:32 IST
The tranquil environs of the India-China border at Nathula, situated at an altitude of 14,400 feet in East Sikkim, erupted in cheers and applause as the armies of two countries faced each other in a friendly volleyball event on Thursday.
The goodwill game definitely changed the atmosphere at the border area as soldiers of the Nathula Garrison of Indian Army and their Chinese counterparts 'Yatung Garrison' were engaged in 'ball game', just a few steps away from the fence on the Indian side.
With an air of perfect camaraderie two matches were played, lasting for about 80 minutes and the results went in favour of the hosts with the score reading 25-18 and 30-29 which was a bonanza for many of the spectators - people in the vicinity.
The event has been conceived by the Indian Army as a fitting prelude to the resumption of border trade between the two neighbours through Nathula, slated for October 2, Colonel V N Bhardwaj of the army's 17 Mountain Division, said.
The spectators, who comprised invited guests from either side of the border, enjoyed a keenly-contested match besides soaking the festive spirit. The idea of organising this event had been mooted by the Indian Army authorities as a confidence building measure keeping in mind the positive vibes generated between the two sides recently, Colonel Bhardwaj said.
Before the start of the matches the national anthems of both the countries were played on the band.