India, China Stand-Off At Border

In News

China has accused Indian troops of “trespassing” its boundary and in a reaction suspended the pilgrimage to Mount Kailash in Tibet. The People’s Liberation Army has accused Indian troops of obstructing road construction on the Chinese side.

China at Sikkim the issue led to the cancellation of the Mansarovar Yatra pilgrimage

Source : Google Map

through the Nathu-la route. In June China removed an old bunker of the Indian army at the tri-junction of India, China and Bhutan in Sikkim. The Indian army had refused to remove the structure after being asked to do so by China. China, on its part, has alleged that Indian soldiers crossed the boundary into China to interfere with the construction of a road.

Past to Present

  • September 1967: Chinese troops fired at Indian posts close to Nathu La and the Indian Army retaliated with full force causing casualties with China significantly higher. A ceasefire was declared later.
  • June 1986: The Indian Army launched exercise ”Chequerboard” after China amassed thousands of troops in the Thandrong pasture on the banks of the Somdurong Chu river. The situation was diffused diplomatically by August 1987.
  • November 2008: Chinese troops destroyed makeshift Indian Army bunkers at Doko La near the Sikkim-Bhutan-Tibet tri-junction.
  • April 2013: Chinese troops intruded into Daulat Beg Oldi in Eastern Ladakh and set up camps in the Depsang Valley. These came ahead of Premier Li Keqiang’s India visit.
  • August 2014: Chinese troops entered 25 to 30 km into the Indian territory in Burtse area in Ladakh and pitched their tents and the standoff continued for three weeks.
  • September 2014:  About 1,000  troops intruded 3 km inside Chumar in Eastern Ladakh. The incident lasted for a week and coincided with Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to India.
  • March 2016: A platoon of chinese soldiers came about 5.5 km inside the Indian territory near Pangong Tso lake in Eastern Ladakh. Incident resolved in a few hours.
  • June 2017: China removed an old bunker of the Indian Army located at the tri-junction of India, China and Bhutan in Sikkim after the Indian side refused to accede to its request to dismantle it.

China’s Stance

  • China’s assertion that Donglang which they called Doklam was part of Chinese territory since ancient times and it doesn’t belong to Bhutan.
  • China’s boundary with India at Sikkim was based on a 127-year-old treaty signed between the Qing empire and Great Britain – the Anglo-Chinese Convention of 1890.
  • Accused India of impinging on Bhutan’s sovereignty by attempting to fight its battles.
  • The suspension of the pilgrimage route was an emergency response to the situation. The pilgrimage route will reopen, it totally depends on whether the Indian side can correct its mistake in time.

Areas of Dispute




Source : The Hindu, Thewire, ET

GS II : International Relation


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