As tensions with China rise due to disagreements over the boundary at the Sikkim-China-Bhutan tri-junction, India has moved as many as 2,500 additional troops from their peace-time deployments in the Sikkim sector to reinforce its position on the Doklam plateau, the Times of India has reported.
According to the daily, China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has also sent some troop reinforcements to Khamba Dzong and other areas near the strategically located Chumbi Valley between Sikkim and Bhutan. However, at the exact stand-off site, there are not more than 300 to 400 soldiers from each side.
"Flag meetings between local commanders have lost their relevance. There is total stalemate. The decision to de-escalate has to come from the politico-diplomatic level. The Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs, set up in January 2012, or talks between the two designated Special Representatives, is the only way to diffuse the situation now," the daily quoted an unnamed source, who was aware of the situation, as saying.
The source also said that all Indian Army formations in the region, including 17 Division (headquartered at Gangtok), 27 Division (Kalimpong), 20 Division (Binnaguri), all infantry mountain warfare units with over 10,000 soldiers each, are maintaining "high operational readiness for any contingency".
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