Border stand-off: Ajit Doval is likely to visit China for meeting of BRICS NSAs on July 26-27

Asked whether the border stand-off was raised by Modi with Xi in Hamburg, Ministry of External Affairs’ official spokesperson Gopal Baglay said, “I would leave it to your imagination and common sense on what should be covered in ‘range of issues’.”

Written by Shubhajit Roy | New Delhi | Updated: July 14, 2017 12:43 pm
border standoff, sikkim standoff, indo-china border, BRICS, ajit doval, BRICS NSA meeting, india news PM Modi with Xi in Hamburg last week. File photo

WITH CHINA raising the pitch on the border stand-off over the last two weeks, India on Thursday maintained a measured tone, saying that diplomatic channels were “available” and were “being used” to address the situation. Sources told The Indian Express that National Security Advisor Ajit Doval is likely to visit China on July 26-27 for the BRICS NSAs’ meeting hosted by his counterpart, Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi. Both are also the Special Representatives designated by their governments to discuss border issues.

New Delhi, meanwhile, also reiterated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping had a “conversation” on a “range of issues” on the sidelines of the BRICS leaders’ meeting last week in Hamburg. The Chinese government had said that there was no official meeting between the two leaders.

Asked whether the border stand-off was raised by Modi with Xi in Hamburg, Ministry of External Affairs’ official spokesperson Gopal Baglay said, “I would leave it to your imagination and common sense on what should be covered in ‘range of issues’.”

Elaborating on Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar’s views in Singapore, that there was no reason why India and China will not be able to deal with border issues, Baglay said the two sides have accumulated a lot of experience from the past in addressing various issues.

Without commenting specifically on the aggressive opinion pieces and editorials run by the Chinese state-run media on the stand-off, Baglay said, ”It is really not for me to comment on the editorials and opinion pieces appearing in the media. This matter that we are dealing with is a serious matter. It has implications for us, for a number of reasons. Therefore, we remain engaged in addressing that matter. We have outlined our approach… I would like to confine myself to what is the approach of the Government of India, what is our thinking in terms of addressing a situation, a dispute that we are dealing with right now.”

On whether the Chinese government had changed its position, the MEA spokesperson said, “What I said was that you should look at the matter comprehensively. I said that last month we issued a statement which reflected our approach/position on that particular matter and also the larger issue. Then I said that there was a conversation between PM Modi and President Xi Jinping on a range of issues after the informal meeting of BRICS leaders at Hamburg on July 7. Then I said that diplomatic channels remain available… I would like to request you to see everything in a comprehensive manner.”

Baglay also emphasised that the border has been peaceful in the recent past. “We have accumulated a lot of experience from the past — both sides — in addressing a number of matters. You know it and it has been said not only by us, but by others that the border has been peaceful and that is the result of the efforts of both sides to maintaining tranquility at the border,” he said.

Asked about India’s strategy following the Chinese statements, he said, “Obviously, I am not an astrologer so I can’t predict what will happen tomorrow. But, I can certainly say that the approach that we had underlined and put out at the end of last month, that continues.”

On Bhutan’s role in the issue, Baglay said it would not be appropriate for him to comment on a “third friendly country”.

Asked about China’s statements on the situation along the LoC — it expressed willingness to play a “constructive role” — he said India’s position on bilaterally resolving all matters with Pakistan, including the Kashmir issue, had not changed.Baglay said the central issue between the two countries was “cross-border terrorism perpetrated on India”. “Terrorism was impacting peace in India and peace and stability in the entire region and the world,” he said.

Baglay said the central issue between the two countries was “cross-border terrorism perpetrated on India”. “Terrorism was impacting peace in India and peace and stability in the entire region and the world,” he said.

Asked if Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi had informed the government about his meeting with the Chinese Ambassador, he replied in the negative and said that the MEA does not keep track of the activities of foreign embassies and did not deal with political parties.

This is the second official response from India on the issue over the last fortnight. On June 30, in its first statement after Chinese attempts to extend a road in the disputed Doklam area near Sikkim, the government had said that New Delhi has conveyed that such construction would represent a “significant change of status quo” with “serious security implications” for India.

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    Suresh Deman
    Jul 22, 2017 at 6:19 pm
    The present China-India stand off is a result of foreign policy paradigm shift and the foreign policy paralysis. One wonders why the focus has shifted from the trade and economic cooperation during Xi Jinping who Modi claimed to have been a good personal friend? Clearly, following the President Obama's visit and more recently Trump-Modi joint statement to conduct the massive Military exercise in Malabar and Modi's pledge to carry forward American interests in South China Sae has not only exasperated the stand off and added fuel to the fire. It appears Modi is playing a dangerous game by playing in Amercian's hands.
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      Ramachandra Vinayak Sakhadeo
      Jul 14, 2017 at 7:16 pm
      Ajit Doval is en led to visit this conference of the NSAs, but is it going to be a fruitful visit when we are facing the PLA in the Chumbi valley ? What is the present status of border settlement negotiations with his opposite Chinese number that he is officially charged with ? Has the Govt. India seen far ahead of the present issue and has given some thought to resolve the border dispute with the PRC ? An impression is there that the Govt.of India is living from day to day.
      Reply
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        Beware ChaptaPaki
        Jul 14, 2017 at 3:30 pm
        CHINA NEVER WAS ONE COUNTRY AT ALL IN HISTORY. THEY WERE SEVEN DIFFERENT AND UNIQUE COUNTRIES/KINGDOMS ACTUALLY. THEY WOULD WORK AND WAGE WAR AMONG THEIR SEVEN GROUPS. IT KEPT THE POPULATION STABLE, FOR THOUSANDS OF YEARS IT WAS SUSTAINABLE BY THE LAND RESOURCES. TODAY HAN CHINESE ARE MULTIPLYING LIKE ANYTHING, SO THEIR COMMUNIST PARTY ALWAYS WANT WAR WITH NEIGHBOURS , FEW THOUSAND CHINESE DIE, NO BIG DEAL, THEN TAKE THEIR HUGE LANDS, AND SHIFT OUT MASSIVE MILLIONS OF HAN CHINESE TO NEWLY CAPTURED LANDS OF NEIGHBOURS. TIBET ALREADY IS OVERFLOWING WITH MILLIONS OF HAN CHINESE FROM CHINA. XINJIANG HAS MILLIONS OF CHINESE FROM CHINA. NEXT UP IS PAKKISTAN.
        Reply
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          Beware ChaptaPaki
          Jul 14, 2017 at 3:17 pm
          Beware...of TERRORRISTS AND ASSASSINNS FROM CHINA AND PAK. AFTER DEATHS OF HUNDREDS OF OUR COURAGEOUS INDIA JAWANS, KILLR TERRORISTS WERE SEARCHED OUT OF DEEP HIDDEN DEPTHS AND FINISHED OFF BY INDIA. CHINA PAK GROUP IS A MASSIVE SUPPORT TO SUCH GROUPS. WATCH THE RISE OF JIHHAAD IN INDIA AGAIN. CHINA JUST ALSO ELIMMINNATED THE NOBLE PEACE PRIZE WINNER, BY INJECTING CREATING CANCER CELLS INTO THAT GUY.
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            Asish
            Jul 14, 2017 at 1:40 pm
            We should pay our homage to Liu Xiabo. What a marvelous figure, what a champion of justice and what a nonviolent nationalist. It is a privilege to hear about such people, it inspires everyone in their journey. This body may be mortal but the spirit, the grit, the desire to do good and be caring for others is stronger, it is hidden in this Universe an energy that drives all of us to go towards what is right, and fight for it.
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            1. M
              mark
              Jul 14, 2017 at 4:31 pm
              Mind that if he was against the Party rule, he was certainly not a nationalist, he was for the complete destruction of Chinese civilisation and culture and for total westernization of it. Applied to India, this is the complete eradication of Indian culture ... he had Christian sympathies, do you have?
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              STCHANDRASEKHAR BABU
              Jul 14, 2017 at 1:29 pm
              Is doklam really trijunction spot or away? If away is it chinese land or disputed land ? Whether our diplomatic channels have required diplomatic stratic thinking ?What our defence minister is doing ? Whether his utterances do good in the given situation ? Is it correct on the part of Army chief to talk like that with press?n Is it the way the army conduct defense matters ?t
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                tang
                Jul 14, 2017 at 3:26 pm
                the border is watershed, so it's easy to identify it.
                Reply
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                Kamal Pasha
                Jul 14, 2017 at 12:26 pm
                Modi finally dropped his trousers in front of China,
                Reply
                1. S
                  Sameer
                  Jul 14, 2017 at 1:35 pm
                  Says a Muslim who hates our PM
                  Reply
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                    Ananthachari
                    Jul 14, 2017 at 3:33 pm
                    What r u talking about Indian Prime Minister and what is the meaning ? Do u understand what is the strike power of India today ? In 20 minutes there won't b china.
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                      Kamal Pasha
                      Jul 15, 2017 at 3:33 am
                      Ananthachari : India's strike power will finish China in 20 minutes. But China's strike power will disintegrate India in 20 seconds. Your scientists made very Big b er in calculations.
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                    Ramachandra Vinayak Sakhadeo
                    Jul 14, 2017 at 11:53 am
                    Where is our independent Defence Minister who should provide political leadership to the armed forces ? Has the PM forgotten to appoint him? What is the use of Doval if he is not accountable to the Parliament ? The PM appears to be taking everything too lightly. He should not go abroad till the next Lok sabha elections.
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