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China Reinforces Its Existing Roads 10 Km Away From Doklam Dispute Area

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| October 6 , 2017 , 09:16 IST

Weeks after the Doklam plateau standoff between Indian and Chinese troops ended, China is upgrading and widening its existing motorable road in the Doklam region, 10km away from the site of the face-off.

However, since the fresh road-construction activity is not taking place southwards of Doklam towards the military-sensitive area of Jampheri Ridge, India has not yet raised any objections.

"The PLA is now using the construction material and bulldozers it had brought to the face-off site at Doklam to improve the road it built in the region some years ago," said a source.

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"China is reinforcing its claim on the Doklam territory (India backs Bhutan's claim on it) by upgrading the road around 10-km north and east of the earlier face-off site. The PLA has been controlling the road for some years and regularly sends patrols to the area," he added.

Despite the disengagement from the face-off site at the Doklam plateau on August 28, India and China continue to maintain stepped up military forces near the India-China-Bhutan tri-junction.

China's road-building activities come a month after Army Chief General Bipin Rawat warned that China would continue its efforts on disputed territories by 'salami slicing'.

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"As far as the northern adversary (China) is concerned, the flexing of muscles has started ... Salami slicing, taking over territory in a very gradual manner, testing our limits of threshold... is something we have to be wary about and remain prepared for situations that could develop into conflicts," Gen Rawat had said.

The standoff at the Doklam plateau had begun when India had protested China's road building activities in the disputed are contested by China and Bhutan.