India keeping close watch on China’s border activities


New Delhi: Even as India and China have yet to decide on the next round of boundary talks, the government Thursday said it was keeping “a close watch” on China’s stepped-up drive to develop infrastructure in the border regions.

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“The government is aware that China is developing infrastructure in the border regions opposite India in Tibet and Xinjiang Autonomous Region,” Minister of State for External Affairs E. Ahamed told parliament in response to a written question.

“The government keeps a close watch on all developments having a bearing on India’s security and takes all necessary measures to safeguard it,” Ahamed said while alluding to the Qinghai-Tibet railway line, road and airport facilities being built by China in border regions.

Ahamed stressed that the government was giving careful and special attention to the development of infrastructure in the border areas to protect its economic and strategic interests.

Amid renewed aggressiveness by Beijing over the border issue, India asserted that Arunachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir were integral parts of India.

Ahamed was responding to a question about the new map of China which shows Arunachal Pradesh as part of China.

Ahamed pointed out that China disputes the international boundary between India and China in the eastern sector and claims approx. 90,000 sq km of Indian territory in the state of Arunachal Pradesh.

The boundary talks between special representatives of India and China, scheduled for Nov 28-29, were postponed over differences over the Dalai Lama’s participation in the Buddhist conference in New Delhi that coincided with the talks.

China regards the Dalai Lama as a “separatist” and a persona non grata.