In yet another act of provocation by the Chinese media, People’s Daily has issued a fresh warning to India. The daily has said that India should not underestimate China’s resolve to defend its territorial sovereignty.
The write-up carrying the warning has byline of Zhong Sheng. People’s Daily has charged Indian troops of crossing the China-India border in the Sikkim sector into the Chinese territory terming it totally illegal.
The daily further said China will take “all necessary measures to safeguard its legitimate and lawful rights and interests.”
The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs had on August 2 issued an endorsed paper titled ‘The Facts and China’s Position Concerning the Indian Border Troops’ Crossing of the China-India Boundary in the Sikkim Sector into the Chinese Territory’ giving its side of the story.
According to the paper, Indian troops crossed the border on June 18 and ‘illegally’ stayed in Chinese territory.
However, the daily didn’t concede that the area in question is a disputed one between Bhutan and China and that China had moved to disrupt the status quo in violation of a 2012 agreement between India and China. The agreement was regarding tri-party discussion in issues related to tri-junction boundary points between India, China and third countries like the one in Doklam.
The article said Indian move can be defined as illegal and that it aims at making trouble. It mentioned a convention signed between Britain and China relating to Sikkim and Tibet and said that according to that convention, ‘Doklam was indisputably Chinese territory.’
It alleged that India made pretexts to justify its illegal action since the incident of border crossing broke out and also said that India’s security concerns over China’s road-building activity are ill-founded.
It said that India’s claim that Dokalam is a disputed area between China and Bhutan is against the truth and law. “The Doklam area has all along been part of China and under China’s continuous and effective jurisdiction. There is no dispute in this regard,” it said, adding that India had no right as a third party in the equation to make territorial claims on behalf of Bhutan.
It said that India’s position posed a challenge to the sovereignty and independence of Bhutan.
“China and India ought to sign a new boundary convention in their own names to replace the 1890 Convention,” said the daily.
The Dokalam stand-off started in mid-June when India accused China of constructing a road in the disputed territory towards Doklam Plateau which was also raised by the Royal Bhutanese Army.
The impasse continues and the situation between India and China remains tense.