Guilty of constructing roads in disputed territories, China may now be regarding roads built within Indian territory as an act of aggression. In a report published in state-run Global Times, security experts in Beijing have been quoted as saying that roads on Indo-China border is a sign of war preparations.
China had ignited the Doklam standoff last year when it began constructing a road in a territory claimed by Bhutan. Since, it has ramped up military presence in Doklam and hastened road construction projects here. Yet, construction of better roads by India all along the border with China is being viewed suspiciously by Beijing. "India is clearly preparing for war, and it is drawing much experience from the defeat it swallowed in 1962 when it lacked such an infrastructure," Wang Dehua, head of the Institute for South and Central Asian Studies at the Shanghai Municipal Center for International Studies, was quoted as saying.
China also viewed Home Minister Rajnath Singh's recent visit to Nelong Valley in Uttarakhand with scepticism. During the visit, Rajnath Singh had said that the Centre has undertaken a special project to connect all the border posts along the Sino-India frontier with roads. He had also said that while there are 'perceptional differences' with China, India maintains good relations.
Across the border though, cordial reciprocation is mostly in short supply.
After aggressive posturing in Doklam, sources have revealed that Chinese troops entered around one kilometre inside Indian territory in Tuting area of Arunachal Pradesh in the last week of December. In other places across the border, China has reportedly begun fortifying its position and even set-up surveillance systems.
While both countries have reaffirmed that development and cooperation are paramount, China continues to test waters in border areas - not just with India but with countries like Japan, Phillipines and many others.