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QUESTION NO.*219 PERMANENT PRESENCE OF CHINESE TROOPS IN DOKLAM AREA

March 15, 2018

RAJYA SABHA
STARRED QUESTION NO.219
TO BE ANSWERED ON 15.03.2018

PERMANENT PRESENCE OF CHINESE TROOPS IN DOKLAM AREA

*219. SHRIMATI VIJILA SATHYANANTH:

Will the Minister of EXTERNAL AFFAIRS be pleased to state:

(a) whether it is a fact that around 1,600-1,800 Chinese troops have now virtually established a permanent presence in the Doklam area;

(b) if so, the details thereof;

(c) whether it is also a fact that China has its eye on Doklam as it would add strategic depth to its narrow Chumbi Valley, which juts like a dagger between Sikkim and Bhutan; and

(d) whether Chinese patrols earlier used to come briefly to Doklam and return but troops have stayed there in what is considered Bhutanese territory for the first time in this winter?

ANSWER
THE MINISTER FOR EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
(SHRIMATI SUSHMA SWARAJ)

(a) to (d) A Statement is laid on the table of the House.

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STATEMENT REFERRED TO IN REPLY TO PARTS (a) TO (d) OF THE RAJYA SABHA STARRED QUESTION NO. 219 REGARDING "PERMANENT PRESENCE OF CHINESE TROOPS IN DOKLAM AREA” FOR ANSWER ON 15.03.2018

The face-off between the Indian and Chinese border personnel in Doklam area of Bhutan started when the Chinese side tried to alter the status quo by building a road in the area in violation of its existing understandings both with Bhutan and India. Noting its deep concerns at the Chinese actions, Government conveyed to the Chinese side that such construction would represent a significant change in status quo with serious security implications for India.

Subsequently, on the basis of persistent diplomatic communications, the disengagement of Indian and Chinese border personnel in the Doklam area was accomplished on 28 August 2017. This also addressed India’s concerns about China’s road construction activity in the area.

Since the disengagement of Indian and Chinese border personnel in the Doklam area on 28 August 2017, there have been no new developments at the face-off site and its vicinity. The status quo prevails in this area.

Government is fully seized of the security needs of the country and remains prepared to deal with and counter all kinds of security challenges at our borders. Government regularly reviews the threat perception to secure our borders and protect national interest. Appropriate measures are taken from time to time to maintain and upgrade the country’s defence preparedness to safeguard the sovereignty, territorial integrity and security of India.

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