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    How Lal Bahadur Shastri neatly side-stepped the Chinese threat in 1965

    By Vicky
    |

    There is a face off along the Indo-China border with both sides building up troops. With China issuing threats on a daily basis, India has said that it has made its position clear and it will not allow the Chinese to construct a motorable road till the tri-junction through the Bhutanese territory of the Doklam plateau.

    Lal Bahadur Shastri

    Back in the days of Jawaharlal Nehru, China had refused to deal with India as far as the affairs of Sikkim and Bhutan. Nehru had written to Chinese about the same in a letter dated March 22 1959. In his response the then Chinese premier Zhou Enlai said that the Sikkim-Tibet boundary does not fall within the scope of present discussions.

    While India continued to stress that it has treaty rights to represent both Sikkim and Bhutan, China said that these were just colonial hangovers. When India incorporated Sikkim as a state in 1975, China had said that they would never recognise this merger.

    In 1965, China had issued a strongly worded threat to India. On 8 September 1965, China said that if India did not dismantle all aggressive military structures on the Sikkim-Tibet boundary, it would be responsible for all consequences.

    The then Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri neatly sidestepped the threat. He said if the bunkers were on the Chinese side they were well within their rights to demolish them.

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