India’s ‘annexation’ of Sikkim ‘a nightmare’ haunting Bhutan
Srinagar: Amidst the Indo-China stand-off, the Chinese state-run media on Thursday called for Sikkim’s “independence” and recommended that Beijing should support “pro-independence appeals” in India.
An editorial in the Global Times said that supporting Sikkim’s independence would “be a powerful card to deal with a ‘bullying’ New Delhi.”
“India’s ‘annexation‘ of Sikkim ‘a nightmare’ haunting Bhutan, and the small kingdom is forced to be submissive to India’s bullying,” the editorial said.
It further pointed out that India had “brutally cracked down” on Sikkim’s “revolts over sovereignty” in the 1960s and 1970s.
“New Delhi deposed the king of Sikkim in 1975 and manipulated the country’s parliament into a referendum to make Sikkim a state of India,” the editorial added.
China, in 2003, had recognized India’s annexation of Sikkim.
“Although China recognized India’s annexation of Sikkim, it can readjust its stance on the matter. There are those in Sikkim that cherish its history as a separate state, and they are sensitive to how the outside world views the Sikkim issue,” the editorial further added.
In the past three weeks, India and China have been in a standoff in Dokalam, a region that lies at the tri-junction between China, Bhutan and Sikkim.
India supports Bhutan’s claim over Dokalam, an area that the Chinese call Donglang.
China has alleged that Indian troops crossed into its territory and disrupted construction work for building a road in Dokalam (Donglang).
Both India and China have rushed more troops to the border as the divide between the two neighbouring countries is turning out to be one of the longest since the India-China war of 1962.
The editorial said, “India has startling control and oppression over Bhutan, and as a result, Bhutan has not established diplomatic ties with its neighbour China or any other permanent member of the UN Security Council. Through unequal treaties, India has severely jeopardized Bhutan’s diplomatic sovereignty and controls its national defence.”