China is strong but India is not a weak nation: Indian Army chief

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He, however, hastened to add that India is also seeking support from other countries in the region so that it is not isolated.

General Rawat said infrastructure development in areas along the northern borders needed speeding up, adding that India should also be prepared for future wars in the cyber space.

Asked about increase in incidents of interaction between Indian and Chinese soldiers, the Army chief said it is a result of increase in the number of Indian troops on the borders and increased patrolling.

“Contact started increasing with increase in patrolling by both sides. Therefore, a large number of transgressions are taking place,” he said adding that transgressions take place due to different perceptions of the Line of Actual Control between the two countries.

Talking about the Doklam issue, the Army chief said Chinese troops have maintained their presence in the northern part of Doklam, which is Chinese territory.

He said road construction had been on in Doklam since 2000, but the Chinese soldiers had come close to Tosa Nala — which divides north and south Doklam — with a large number of manpower and equipment in June last year, just before the India-China standoff started.

“We felt they will probably try and claim the whole of Doklam and build a road there… possible reach where the RBA (Royal Bhutan Army) post is… it was also posing a threat to us as it was changing the status quo,” he said.

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“We felt they could take the road further down south… it is then we were compelled to take action… that is what led to a stalemate.”

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