China ups troop presence,deploys 800 soldiers near Doklam standoff site


Beijing—The Doklam faceoff between India and China, which started on June 16, continues with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) increasing presence near the standoff site.

According to a report in The Indian Express, PLA has pitched around 80 tents and deployed nearly 800 troops a kilometre away from the Doklam plateau. However, China has not positioned a full PLA infantry battalion at the site.


China already has 300 PLA soldiers at the standoff site. On the Sikkim side of the border, the Indian Army has deployed about 350 soldiers.


The Indian Army has not recorded any movement on the Chinese side yet, the IE quoted its sources as saying.


In the meantime, the Indian Army has decided to conduct an Operational Alert – a two-week long annual training of the Army units, which familiarise themselves with their area of operation – in August instead of September or October.


The Indian Army has also denied making any ‘unusual movement’.


India and China have been locked in a face-off in the Doklam area of the Sikkim sector for over 50 days after Indian troops stopped the Chinese Army from building a road in the area.


China claimed it was constructing the road within their territory and has been demanding immediate pull-out of the Indian troops from the disputed Doklam plateau.


Indian Army orders People near Doklam to vacate their Village


Meanwhile,The Indian Army has ordered the evacuation of a village close to the Doklam India-Bhutan-China tri-junction, News18, reported.

According to sources, a few hundred villagers living in Nathang village have been asked to vacate their houses immediately. Nathang is 35 km from the site of the two-month old standoff between Indian and Chinese troops.

It was not immediately clear if the order had been issued to accommodate thousands of soldiers of the 33 Corp who are reportedly moving from Sukna towards Doklam or whether it was a precautionary measure to avoid civilian casualties in case of a skirmish. 

Villagers of Nathang, a small village with just a few hundred inhabitants, whom News18 spoke to, confirmed witnessing heavy troop movement in the area of late. 

While the Army officially did not talk about the troop movement, some senior military officers called it an annual exercise that takes place in September, but has been advanced this year.

According to some reports, the Indian Army has called the troop movement in the area a regular maintenance move. The reports went on to quote army sources as saying that the military is in a ‘no war, no peace’ mode. 

This, in military parlance, means being in a confrontational position with the enemy. 

The state-controlled Chinese media has in the last few weeks been beating war drums quite incessantly. In a recent editorial published in China Daily, India was warned that “the countdown to a clash between the two forces has begun”. 

The editorial, titled New Delhi should come to its senses while it has time, went on to state that the window to peacefully resolve the standoff in Doklam was closing as the row enters its seventh week. 

China is planning a “small scale military operation” to “expel” Indian troops from the Doklam area within two weeks, a report in a Beijing daily read.

China is planning a “small scale military operation” to “expel” Indian troops from the Doklam area within two weeks, a report in a Beijing daily read.

“The countdown to a clash between the two forces has begun, and the clock is ticking away the time to what seems to be an inevitable conclusion.”

This is just one of the several vitriolic articles that have appeared in Chinese news agency Xinhua and their newspaper Global Times, in recent past. 

The face-off between Indian and Chinese troops though is two months old now.

It started in mid-June in Doklam tri-junction when Indian troops stopped the Chinese army from building a road in the disputed area. China building a road on that site, India feared, would allow Chinese troops to cut India’s access to its northeastern states. 

As per China’s claims, it was constructing the road within its own territory. 

Since the standoff, India has constantly batted for a dialogue but China has demanded immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Indian troops before a dialogue or peace process is initiated.

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