Indian army chief tours border state with China amid tensions

India’s army chief visited the mountainous state of Sikkim bordering China on Thursday, where tensions have flared after Beijing accused New Delhi of sending troops into its territory and obstructing the construction of a road.

Small incursions and troop stand-offs are common along other parts of China and India’s contested 3,500 km (2175 miles) frontier, but a flare-up near strategically positioned Sikkim is rare.

General Bipin Rawat arrived in Gangtok, the capital of the tiny Himalayan state, before heading off to visit troop formations. A spokesman for the Indian army said the one-day trip was “routine” and planned before the recent tensions.

Reports of the incursion and a confrontation between troops emerged as Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Washington to meet U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday, the latest in a line of stand-offs reported during diplomatic initiatives.

India has deepened its military ties with the United States in recent years, worrying China, which is also unhappy with India’s refusal to participate in Beijing’s multi-billion-dollar Belt and Road infrastructure initiative. India is concerned the project could cement China’s dominance over Asia.

According to the Chinese interpretation of events, Indian guards crossed into the Donglang region earlier in June and obstructed work on a road on a plateau.

The two sets of troops then confronted each other close to a highly strategic valley controlled by China that separates India from Bhutan – a close Indian ally – and gives China access to the so-called Chicken’s Neck, a slither of land that connects India to its remote northeastern regions.

Indian media have reported that the dispute began when China removed an old Indian bunker.

China says that unlike other parts of their shared border, the delineation of the frontier with Sikkim is settled, and it has the right to develop the area.

“Donglang Region is part of China’s territory,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said on Thursday. “China’s road-building activities in Donglang on its own territory are totally reasonable and understandable.”

Late on Thursday, the ministry released on its website two photographs it said showed Indian troops and at least two Indian military bulldozers on what it said was the Chinese side of the border.

The Nathu La Pass, which lies on the frontier between Sikkim and Tibet, was the site of a fierce border clash between Chinese and Indian troops in 1967.

(Reporting by Tommy Wilkes; Additional reporting by Christian Shepherd and Ben Blanchard in BEIJING; Editing by Nick Macfie and Michael Perry)

Source: Reuters “Indian army chief tours border state with China amid tensions”

Note: This is Reuters’ report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.


12 Comments on “Indian army chief tours border state with China amid tensions”

  1. Joseph says:

    Last time Nehru demanded Chinese soldiers to crawl to surrender in 1962, the Chinese made the Indian soldiers ran down the mountain naked in winter to avoid capture. This time, it is summer, so it will be a lot warmer. But is General Bipin Rawat going to run down the mountain naked too? It would be easy for him to avoid capture if he run down along with his soldiers naked together. At least there’s no Nehru-style ultimatum this time, yet. Otherwise, start stripping and running.


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  3. Simon says:

    China does not even have to brief the UN but take pre-emptive strike on Indian position, not only driving Indian troops out of Chinese territory but also occupy Sikkim and declare a “No Fly Zone” against India over Sikkim and along the border.
    India’s application of membership to the SCO should be rejected.


  4. steve says:

    When push comes to shoot and China has run out of options educating these subversives or Indian terrorist, China will then present it’s final briefing to the UN declaring China’s sovereignty boundaries and lines of demarcation from India. Only then will a confrontational bloody war erupt. India had better prepare for the worst outcome, there will be lots of corpses. Prevention is better than an aftermath, that is on the Indian side. What is India trying to prove to its fellow Indians. Start a bloody confrontational war with China.? China is not Pakistan.


    • Anon says:

      As President Putin said, ‘If a war is unavoidable, it is better to strike first”.

      Beijing should cut off India from Sikkim, Bhutan and the North East Territories including Southern Tibet. New Delhi had NO business annexing these territories in the first place.

      What is India doing in Bhutan, stationing its troops there anyway? India is NOT imperial Britain. Beijing SHOULD teach India a lesson and take back its land originally grabbed by the former British imperialist. It IS time. Let justice be done.


      • Steve says:

        This is a territorial dispute between Bhutan India China especialy Bhutan and China. India is just concerned of its security link around chicken neck. India is very jealous and concerned about China’s marvelous ability to draw in neighbouring countries for its B&R initiatives. Bhutan is also an ally of India but may concede to China of its territorial claims. If it does its goodbye India. No big deal for China.


        • Assassin says:

          It is no “dispute”. It is New Delhi’s greed in wanting to grab more territories. It has marched it’s troops into Sikkim and now Bhutan and using Bhutan as an excuse to claim Chinese territories. Beijing should be cleared-eyed that this IS an invasion and NOT a “dispute”. And what do you do in an invasion? You send your troops to evict these interlopers and into their territories to annex it in order to protect your own, teaching the losing thuggish invaders a lesson at the same time that greed does not pay.


          • steve says:

            Bhutan says China’s road has been built on Bhutan territory. India, an ally of Bhutan is taking the advantage of stationing Indian troops. Until this territorial dispute is cleared, China’s road construction has being hampered. A lot of negotiations are now taking place, but I don’t think gunfire is the first resort, as least not yet anyway.


            • Assassin says:

              It is naive to presume Bhutan is saying what it said on its own volition. It is saying what New Delhi wants it to say with a gun pointed at its head. It is already a vassal with its power usurped by Indian troops in Bhutan. India is an imperial power. Now how would Moscow deal with a country like that? It doubtful they would take it lying down. Beijing should consider that seriously and give New Delhi a deadline and ultimatum.


  5. Fre Okin says:

    As I said all along, India is the Mother of all Thieves. She don’t negotiate sincerely, she make illegal annexation and just invite herself into Bhutan with hundreds, even thousands of troops there Colonizing Them to protect Arunachal Pradesh/S Tibet and now into Chinese territory as well AND try to tell the world it is Chinese fault. There is a genetic flaw with the Hindu nationalists leadership with people like Modi. This is the country that invented Suicide Bombing killing Rajev Gandhi and teach all the terrorists, Talibans, ISIS, Palestines to follow suit. China should punish India by NEVER allowing her into NSG, never become a UN Permanent Member as she can Never Be Trusted to be an honest country as long as Hindu nationalists run their country.


  6. Max says:

    This is ridiculous. Just shoot to kill and capture if not evict the Indian soldiers. Thugs and gangsters mentality again, these Indians. They need be taught a lesson. As Fre Okin would say, Beijing is sending the wrong me to New Delhi.


    • Anon says:

      Absolutely. And Washington is stirring trouble in the world by encouraging “terrorist” and “imperialist” and plain “crook” New Delhi to steal Chinese territories. The way they did in Syria, and Ukraine.

      New Delhi and Washington must be nuked. Washington ain’t no good guy and it promotes bad guys. It is the “anti Christ” in this world.