Amid consternation in India over reports of construction of a Chinese village in Arunachal Pradesh, Beijing has said that ‘construction of village within its own territory’ is ‘normal’. The Chinese foreign ministry said that the development and construction by China was “beyond reproach”.
This is not the first time China has exerted its claims on Arunachal Pradesh. China has for long issued stapled visas to residents of the region it refers to as ‘southern Tibet’.
Satellite images by a US-based imaging company Planet Labs had shown that China has constructed a village in Subansiri village of Arunachal Pradesh. Responding to the reports, the External Affairs Ministry had said that Beijing had undertaken such activities even in the past.
“We have seen recent reports on China undertaking construction work along the border areas with India. China has undertaken such infrastructure construction activity in the past several years,” the MEA had said. Images showed houses constructed by China inside the Indian territory.
China claims Arunachal Pradesh as part of southern Tibet, while India’s consistent stand has been that the northeastern state is an integral and inalienable part of the country.
“China’s normal construction on its own territory is entirely a matter of sovereignty,” Hua was quoted as saying by the Chinese foreign ministry on its website in an updated statement.
In a report, showed two images of the area in Arunachal Pradesh where it said a new village has been set up by China and it consisted of about 101 homes. According to the channel, the first image dated 26 August 2019 did not show any human habitation but the second one of November 2020 shows a row of structures.
In a cautious reaction to the report, India on 18 January said it keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on the country”s security, and takes necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi said India has stepped up the construction of border infrastructure, including roads and bridges for the improvement of livelihood of its citizens.
“Government keeps a constant watch on all developments having a bearing on India”s security and takes all the necessary measures to safeguard its sovereignty and territorial integrity,” it said.
The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC).
The report about China setting up a new village in Arunachal Pradesh comes amid a military standoff in eastern Ladakh for over eight months.
India and China have held several rounds of military and diplomatic talks to resolve the face-off in eastern Ladakh, but no significant headway has been made so far.