(TibetanReview.net, Jan19’21) – China has built a totally new village with 101 homes in a border area within the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, reported ndtv.com Jan 18, citing satellite images accessed by it. The report said the construction was approximately 4.5 km within Indian territory of the de facto border. Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram has accused China of altering the status quo in Arunachal Pradesh after being in illegal occupation of Tibet while the government has played down the seriousness of the development.
The report noted that though the area was Indian territory, as per government maps, it was in effective Chinese control since 1959. However, earlier there was only a Chinese military post on it; but a full-fledged village that can house thousands had now come up on it.
The satellite images show that there was no village in this area in Aug, 2020, but by Nov 2020, 101 homes appeared in a completed village, the report said.
The new village, located on the banks of Tsari Chu, was stated to lie in the Upper Subansiri district, an area long disputed by India and China and marked by armed conflicts dating back to 1959 when China fully annexed Tibet by trashing a May 1951 agreement with the Tibetan government at Lhasa.
An authentic online map of the Surveyor General of India, used by the government as its official map, clearly shows that the Chinese village lies well within Indian territory, the report noted.
The government of India has, however, played down the seriousness of the development, indicating that it was aware of the development.
“We have seen recent reports on China undertaking construction work along the border areas with India. China has undertaken such infrastructure construction activity in the past several years,” the report quoted India’s Foreign Ministry as saying, when approached with a satellite image of the new village.
In fact, it has further said, ”Our Government too has stepped up border infrastructure including the construction of roads, bridges etc, which has provided much needed connectivity to the local population along the border.”
India keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on the country’s security, and takes necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity, the PTI news agency Jan 18 cited the India’s ministry of external affairs as saying Jan 18.
Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram has accused China of being in illegal occupation of Tibet and of having altered the status quo in Arunachal Pradesh, reported oneindia.com Jan 19.
Also, Rajya Sabha MP and BJP leader Subramanian Swamy has said India was committing a “great blunder” in not acknowledging the fact that China had “grabbed” Indian territory in Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh, reported freepressjournal.in Jan 18.
The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC). China claims Arunachal Pradesh as part of southern Tibet, while India denies it, citing A 1914 tripartite border agreement among Tibet, India and China.