GUWAHATI, Aug 13 - Chinese control over the Doka-La plateau will give the neighbouring country a huge strategic advantage and that is why the Government of India must maintain a firm stand on the issue. This was the observation made by Brigadier (Retd) Ranjit Borthakur, who is well versed with India-China relations as he had served in the �China desk� as an Army intelligence officer for quite some time.
Talking to The Assam Tribune, Brig Borthakur said that despite the long standoff between India and China in Doka-La , he is not apprehending a full scale war. He pointed out that India has a more than 4,000 kilometer long boundary with China and apart from one particular area, there is no unusual movement of Chinese troops in any other part of the international border.
On the importance of the Doka-La area, Brig Borthakur said that control over the area would give the Chinese a huge strategic advantage over India. He pointed out that if the Chinese manage to gain control over the area, they would only have to cross another ridge in Bhutan to come into close proximity to the narrow corridor in North Bengal, which connects the North East with the rest of India. However, at the same time, he pointed out that at present, Indian troops are tactically at a much advantageous position than the Chinese in the Doka-La area and it is very unlikely that the Chinese would like to start a war. �As far as we know, the Chinese have not moved regular Army men into the area and only the personnel of the Border Defence Regiment are still deployed in the area,� he added. However, at the same time, he admitted that because of infrastructure development in China, the troops can be moved into the international border areas within a short time if required.
Brig Borthakur pointed out that the Government of India has so far been handling the situation with maturity and very few media statements have been released on the issue. While, on the other hand, the Chinese have been issuing media statements every day and they are also using the state controlled media , which is bit unusual as in the past, China used to keep quiet whenever any transgressions took place. He said that the Chinese People�s Congress is scheduled to meet in October and the president of the country need to show his strength before the Congress. May be that is why, China is making all kinds of statements on the issue, he said. He also expressed the view that the standoff would not last for a very long time as it would be impossible for the troops to operate in the area in winter.