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China built a new strategic highway

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China built a new strategic highway

China built a new strategic highway

China has recently completed the construction of its strategically important highway. This highway will strengthen China’s access to the far-flung areas of the disputed border of India’s Arunachal Pradesh.

The highway, commissioned in 2014, is a part of the extensive infrastructure forward movement along the border areas of Tibet, which passes through the valley of the Brahmaputra River (YarlungZhangboor in Tibet).

This highway connects Pad Township with the ‘Tibet Autonomous Region- TAR’,  Nyingchi and Medog County in China. Madog is the last province in Tibet, close to the border of Arunachal Pradesh (India).

With the construction of this highway, the journey between Nyingchi and Medog County will now be reduced by eight hours.

Brahmaputra River

  • This river with the deepest valley in the world, is the longest river in Tibet, it has the highest mountain peak to the lowest basin (7,000 m).
  • It may be noted that China claims Arunachal Pradesh as a part of southern Tibet, which has been rejected by India.
  • The Indo-China border dispute involves the Line of Actual Control- LAC of 3,488 km.

Other strategic construction works by China

Railway Line:

  • In the year 2020, China started work on a railway line, which is very important strategically. The line will connect China’s Sichuan province to Nyingchi in Tibet. The railway line passes near the border of Arunachal Pradesh in India.
  • Earlier in 2006, Qinghai-Tibet railway was started. It is the second major rail link to Tibet since then.

Construction of new villages:

  • There were reports of 3 villages being set up by China in Arunachal Pradesh in January 2021, 5 km from Bum La Pass.
  • Through satellite images, a new village named ‘Pangda’, built within 2-3 km of Bhutan border in the year 2020, was seen.
  • In the year 2017, the Government of Tibet Autonomous Region –TAR launched a plan to create medium-rich villages in the border areas. Total of 628 villages will be developed under this scheme which will be located in Nyingchi, Shigatse, Shannan and Nyingchi provinces and other remote areas along the borders of India, Bhutan, Nepal and China.

This ‘Mega YarlungZangbo Hydro Power Project’, to be built in the ‘ MedogCounty’ Valley of China, is expected to play an important role in China. This will increase the efficiency of military personnel and material transportation and logistics supplies in China’s border region, and will greatly improve the supply process.

Concerns of India:

Steps taken by India:

  • India will spend 10% of the Border Area Development Program (BADP) only to improve infrastructure on the China border area.
  • Border Roads Organization (BRO) has also constructed the Daporijo Bridge over the Subansiri River in Arunachal Pradesh, which connects the roads leading to LAC between India and China.
  • In Nechiphu, West Kameng District of Arunachal Pradesh, a tunnel is also being constructed to reduce the travel time of the troops from Tawang to LAC.
  • In Arunachal Pradesh, a tunnel is being constructed under the ‘La’ pass connecting Tawang to Arunachal Pradesh and Guwahati.
  • The Government of Arunachal has talked about running a pilot project for the basic development of 10 cities along the Indo-China border, which will prevent those migrating from China to distant urban centers in the state.
  • Indian Air Force has inaugurated the runway in the Vijayanagar village of India’s eastern Changlang district in the year 2019 in Arunachal Pradesh.
  • In 2019, the Indian Army, along with its newly formed Integrated Battle Groups (IBG), undertook ‘HimVijaya’ combat exercises in Arunachal Pradesh and Assam.
  • The Bogibeel Bridge, built in the year 2018, is India’s longest road-rail bridge connecting Dibrugarh in Assam to Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh. This bridge will facilitate quick movement of troops and equipment to areas near the India-China border.

Source- The Hindu

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