Beijing: Amid the skirmish between the Indian Army and the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) at Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh, China has constructed a bridge near Doklam.
This bridge has been built close to the place where there was a dispute between India and China in 2017. After a 73-day standoff, the armies of both countries pulled back from the disputed site. China is currently occupying land claimed by Bhutan in Doklam.
According to intelligence reports, China has strengthened infrastructure in the areas around Doklam. Underground tunnels have been made to store heavy weapons. It is feared that China has almost doubled its military strength in this area as compared to 2017.
According to a report by India Today, China has constructed a new bridge near the disputed area in Doklam. China has also built many new roads in the surrounding areas of Doklam. The report also corroborated the intelligence from satellite images from American space firm Planet Labs PBC. China continues its expansion in Bhutanese territory about 9 km from the India-Bhutan-China tri-junction. In 2020, China established Pangda village in Bhutanese territory. The year 2021 saw the expansion of this village.
In the report, on the basis of new satellite pictures, it has been said that recently a lot of development has been seen near this village. China has also constructed a bridge over a river in this area. Many new buildings have also been built.
Recent photographs show Chinese occupation of more land south of Doklam. About 20 km from the border, China is building clusters of new villages called Langmarpo in Bhutanese territory. Many of these are under construction. China is rapidly building these villages in Saiburu, Chaitangsha and Kule areas.
India’s biggest concern with China’s construction in Doklam is the security of the Siliguri Corridor. It is also known as Chicken’s Neck. It is a narrow corridor that extends for only 22 km at its narrowest. This corridor connects the northeastern states with the rest of the country. It is feared that through Doklam, China may target the Siliguri Corridor to cut off connectivity with Northeast India.
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