LOOKEAST REPORT | Former Indian ambassador to China Gautam Bambawale on Saturday pitched for a determined push to boost Indian software and pharmaceutical exports to China. “If the Chinese open up to these exports from India, they can get quality products at very competitive costs and India can cut down its adverse balance of payments,”…
The Indian army has been asked to step up vigil all along the disputed Sino Indian Border to prevent a repeat of the Doklam standoff.
A senior Army official expressed deep concern about the vulnerability of Indian defences around few mountain passes with Tibet, especially on the tri–junction with Bhutan and Myanmar.
“There are 18 mountain passes in the region and we have been carrying out long–range patrols to all these passes regularly,” he said but was not willing to be named.
“After the Doklam standoff, we have increased our presence on India’s side of the tri–junction as it is very important for us from the strategic dimension,” the senior Army official said.
He also said Chinese Army did not intrude into the tri–junction regularly but had constructed a road near the area, which could be convenient for the movement of the PLA.
The official said that Myanmarese border guarding forces did not patrol the tri–junction around Walong.
“After the tri–junction in Doklam in the Sikkim sector, this Walong salient is the most important tri–junction along the Sino–India border,” he said.
Walong witnessed a fierce battle during the 1962 border war but the Indian garrison capitulated after a gallant resistance.
The growing Sino–Myanmar military alliance also worries India because the Chinese may use Burmese territory to outflank Indian defences.
Troops of India and China engaged in a 73–day long face–off in Doklam from June Aug 28, 2017 when China tried to construct a road in the Doklam area on a territory disputed by China and Bhutan.
This was seen as a strategic threat to India’s sensitive Siliguri Corridor that connects seven North–eastern states to the Indian mainland.
After the tri–junction in Doklam in the Sikkim sector, this Walong salient is the most important tri–junction along the Sino–India border. Walong witnessed a fierce battle during the 1962 border war but the Indian garrison capitulated after a gallant resistance. The growing Sino–Myanmar military alliance also worries India because the Chinese may use Burmese territory to outflank Indian defences
Since the Doklam standoff, India has deployed more security forces and increased patrolling along the borders with China in the Tibetan region.
China have been constructing new roads and improving its overall infrastructure along the nearly 4000–km long border with India.
“We have been carrying out war drills regularly. You have to be in an offensive mode to remain in an advantageous position, “said the army official.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said last month that China had undertaken the construction of helipads, sentry posts and trenches for its army personnel near Doklam.
Sources confirmed that China has been keeping its troops in north Doklam and upgrading its infrastructure in the disputed area.
Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat suggested India should shift focus from Pakistan to the Chinese border indicating the gravity of the situation. ■