China increases troop level near Doka La, starts widening road 12 km from site of Sikkim standoff

New Delhi: China has maintained a sizeable presence of its troops near the site of the Doka La standoff with India and has even started widening an existing road which is around 12 kilometres from the site of the conflict.

Sources said that China has been slowly increasing its troop level in Doka La which could further escalate the current situation as India has reasons to be concerned over it.

An indication of the tension between the two countries due to presence of Chinese forces in the Chumbi Valley at Doka La was also given by Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa. "The two sides are not in a physical face-off as we speak. However, their forces in Chumbi Valley are still deployed and I expect them to withdraw as their exercise in the area gets over," Dhanoa told reporters.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

There has been territorial disputes between China and Bhutan over Doka La and India has been staunchly supporting Thimphu over the issue.

Troops of India and China were locked in a 73-day-long standoff in Doka La since 16 June after the Indian side stopped the building of a road in the disputed area by the Chinese Army.

Bhutan and India were in touch with each other during the course of the face-off that ended on 28 August.

Days after the face-off ended, Army Chief Bipin Rawat had said that China has started "flexing its muscles" and warned that the situation in India's northern border could snowball into a larger conflict.

There are also reports that People's Liberation Army (PLA) has increased more troops on its forward post in Yatung.

Sources said though Chinese troops have been deployed at Doka La, they leave the area during winters.

Published Date: Oct 06, 2017 08:18 AM | Updated Date: Oct 06, 2017 08:18 AM

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