No boundary dispute with Bhutan in Doklam: China

Nehru blamed China for illegal claiming of Doka La in 1959

While the Indian Foreign Ministry has not indicated whether Modi and Xi will hold a bilateral meeting, there is every likelihood of their meeting, even in passing, during the five-nation Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa leaders' meeting, which is traditionally held on the sidelines of a G20 summit.

"The Indian side has changed arguments several times, first claiming that "China intruded into Indian territory", but later saying "there was no incursion into our territory" followed by the new excuse that India is helping Bhutan safeguard its territory". Beijing has been demanding withdrawal of Indian troops as a precondition to conduct meaningful dialogue. India supports Bhutan's claim over Dokalam, an area that the Chinese call Donglang. "Only by approaching with peaceful resolution, can peace and tranquility of the border areas be maintained".

Amid the escalating tensions between China and India at the Sikkim border, the Chinese Army is conducting a series of mock drills in Tibet, simulating war-like scenarios.

"I don't know whether India has considered China's security concerns while doing these things".

Defence Minister ArunJaitley last week said that the India of today is not the same as that of 1962, a retort to China stating that India would do well to remember the "historic lessons" of its defeat in the war fought over Arunachal Pradesh. The reason is simple: China is constructing a road through a part of the territory in the Doklam plateau which is in dispute between China and Bhutan.

"The latest incident happened at a section that has always been demarcated by an 1890 historical convention and reaffirmed in documents exchanged between successive Chinese and Indian governments since then". India has a compulsion to react, because, besides honouring its arrangement to provide security to Bhutan, it has to prevent this attempt by China to expand its military deployment space in the Chumbi Valley by encroaching into Bhutanese territory, which presently is a vulnerability for China due to inadequate deployment space.

New Delhi fears that if Beijing builds a road there, it will give China greater access to India's seven northeastern states via a vulnerable 20km-corridor known as "chicken's neck". "Only when India pulls back troops, the status quo will be restored".

"Given the growing power asymmetry between China and India, China wants to lock in geopolitical and geo-economic advantages". "Nowadays, the situation is entirely different from 1962, so we hope India will not do anything irrational for its own good, otherwise it will pay more than in the past", Hu Zhiyong, a research fellow at the state funded Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, said. Despite Bhutan issuing a demarche to China to stop further road building into its territory, China continues to do so aggressively.



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