Beijing: China on Thursday asked India not to ‘over interpret’ its extensive infrastructure development along the disputed border saying the effort is aimed at economic development of the local populace.

“The primary purpose of the infrastructure is for economic development and to raise the living standards of the local people,” Spokesman of the Chinese Ministry of Defence Colonel Yang Yujun said at a media briefing.

He was responding to a question from PTI about growing concerns in India over rapid development along the disputed border as well as in the mountainous Tibet region. China has already built about five airports, besides road and rail links in Tibet that stretches close to Arunachal Pradesh, which China claims as southern Tibet.

“I hope this will not be over interpreted by the Indian side. I hope Indian side will work together with the Chinese side to seriously implement the consensus reached by two governments to jointly maintain peace and stability of the border areas,” he said.

Developmental projects being undertaken in Tibet has sparked concerns in India as it would provide considerable leverage to the 2.3 million-strong People’s Liberation Army (PLA) to move men and material up to the borders with relative ease.

Yang however did not reply to a question on India’s plans to beef up its own infrastructure along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). This month China inaugurated its second railway line from Lhasa, the provincial Capital of Tibet to Shigatse, which comes close to Indian borders near Sikkim as well as Nepal. Work on another railway line linking Lhasa to Nyingchi in the east is also expected to begin soon, recent official media report said.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal