Amid Border Standoff, India, Bhutan Converge At Event For Chinese Army

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Chinese media reports suggest that Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the United States, military hardware purchases from Washington, including drones, and India's participation with the US and Japan in the recent round of Malabar naval exercise in the Bay of Bengal, were influencing the dialogue between China and India on ending the Doklam crisis. It is a demilitarised zone where Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) jawans do not carry their weapons in accordance with a bilateral pact in 2000. Col Anand added, "transgressions do happen but they are mainly due to differing perceptions of LAC".

The India-China border has not been delineated and, therefore, such transgressions by troops from the two countries have taken place on several occasions in the past as well.

In the second incident, Chinese troops also threatened shepherds and asked them to leave along with their animals from the area, sources said.

"There is a written agreement signed in 2012 which states that the issue of trijunction (the border where the three countries meet) should be decided by India, China and ..."

While China has been demanding that India must withdraw its troops from Doklam for a dialogue to begin, India has said that troops of both sides should withdraw simultaneously.

After the war, ITBP jawans would patrol the area with weapons in a non-combative manner - with the barrel of the gun pointing down. In the 1962 war, the PLA did not enter the middle sector and focused on the western (Ladakh) and eastern (Arunachal Pradesh) sectors.

The incident took place just a day before National Security Adviser Ajit Doval left for Beijing to attend a meeting of NSAs of BRICS. Doka La is the Indian name for the region which Bhutan recognises as Doklam, while China claims it as part of its Donglang region. Officials also said the ITBP patrols the Barahoti region in civil dress where Indian shepherds from border villages and people from Tibet graze their animals. Three days later, an air transgression by a Chinese helicopter was reported in the same area. "It would be wise for India to pull back its troops as soon as possible, instead of just beating around the bush or bargaining with China in the name of Bhutan".

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