Doklam issue: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday completed his successful visit to China for the BRICS summit. During the summit that was attended by the heads of the member countries and others, a lot of different issues were talked about, including the disengagement of Indian and Chinese troops in the Doklam area that took place last week. While the disengagement may have paved the way for PM Modi’s China visit, what has now emerged is that both the Indian and Chinese soldiers are still there on the Doklam plateau -they have just moved back by 300 meters. Indian Express quoted multiple sources saying that the disengagement- wherein both sets of soldiers, along with their tents and road construction equipment have moved away from the faceoff site on Doklam plateau but only by a distance of around 150 metres each- is fully in accordance with the two statements issued by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on August 28.
MEA in its first statement said that the “expeditious disengagement of border personnel at the faceoff site at Doklam has been agreed to and is ongoing.” While in the second statement MEA said, “the process (of expeditious disengagement) has since been almost completed under verification.”
Official sources while talking about the disengagement on the plateau said that the terms for disengagement were decided in diplomatic negotiations in Beijing, which were led by the Indian ambassador to China, Vijay Gokhale, and handled at the highest levels of the government in Delhi. The Army headquarters was closely involved in the consultations, but the final proposal was conveyed to the Brigadier at Nathu La on Saturday, August 26. He, along with his Chinese counterpart, got around to working out the process of disengagement which would be verified by both sides, according to Indian Express.
According to the agreed terms of the disengagement, Indian soldiers who along with their tents and bulldozers were up to around 400 metres inside Bhutanese territory — would move out first to their side of the border, before noon on the day of the disengagement. Further, the Chinese army would withdraw to Yatung (Yadong) or further north, way beyond the Chumbi Valley on the same day, as stated by MEA on August 28. As per sources, a few hours were decided for each of the withdrawals to take place. The withdrawal could then be verified by the other side after that time.