Change in status quo on border by China may lead to another Doklam, says Indian ambassador to China, Gautam Bambawale

Beijing: Gautam Bambawale, the Indian Ambassador to China firmly stated the Indian stand with the words, “The ‘Doklam’ dispute is over. The political dialogue between the two countries has been resumed. But there is no dialogue established between the two armies. A dialogue between the Indian and Chinese armies is an extreme necessity. Because if China tries to change the status quo at the border then a repeat of ‘Doklam’ is possible”. At the same time, Bambawale expressed confidence that Prime Minister Modi and Chinese President Jinping will meet at the ‘SCO’ conference in June.

gautam bambawale, china, india, doklamThe Indian Ambassador frankly stated the Indian objections about the ‘Doklam’ as well as ‘CPEC’ in an interview with the Hong Kong daily, the ‘South China Morning Post’ (SCMP). He said, ‘China had started road construction in Doklam without any prior intimation to India. This was not acceptable. This caused the Doklam dispute. If India would have been informed in advance by China, India would have raised its objection to the construction at the same time and further dispute could have been avoided’. Ambassador Bambawale warned that, ‘If China attempts to change the status quo then the Doklam dispute will be sparked again’.

Bamabawale drew attention towards the sensitive point that although the dialogue at the political level between India and China has been resumed, no dialogue had yet been established between the two armies.

Bambawale said, ‘A dialogue between the Indian and Chinese armies is important in order to avoid repetition of Doklam-like situations as well as to diffuse mutual tensions’. However, China is desperate to avenge ‘Doklam’ and is not inclined for discussions at the military level. Although, Bambawale did not mention this directly, he has given such indications in his interview.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Bambawale explained the Indian position about the One Belt One Road (OBOR) in the interview. ‘This project is challenging the Indian sovereignty. The ‘China Pakistan Economic Corridor(CPEC) which is a part of the OBOR, passes through Pakistan Occupied Kashmir(PoK). This is a part of India and therefore, it is an infringement on the Indian sovereignty’, Bambawale pointed out. Bambawale said that Indian Prime Minister Modi and Chinese President Jinping will have a discussion at the ‘SCO’ conference to be held in China in the month of June.

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