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  • Sikkim Earthquake: Perils of Poor Preparedness

    An earthquake of the magnitude 6.9 on the Richter scale occurred in Sikkim and the neighbouring states of West Bengal, Assam, and Bihar on September 18, 2011. The tremors were felt in five other Indian states, besides affecting neighbouring Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, and China. Although few lives were lost (111 in all) despite the high magnitude of the quake, primarily because its epicentre was in the remote and thinly-populated area of Mangan, significant lessons were learnt in its aftermath.

    January 2012

    Chumbi Valley: Economic Rationale but Strategic Resonance

    Shaping responses towards the issue of Chumbi Valley would perhaps require a penetrating understanding of the “reality” that defines China’s political trajectory in South Asia in coming years.

    September 23, 2010

    Can India Say No?

    Where are India-China relations heading, given repeated Chinese claims in recent years to Indian territory and a noticeable hardening of its position beginning with Sun Yuxi’s statements on Arunachal Pradesh in 2006? The latest Chinese claim is on Sikkim’s finger tip region, which came up a few weeks before Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee’s four-day visit to China between 4 and 7 June 2008.

    June 23, 2008

    Chinese Checkers in the Himalayas

    In a disturbing sign, the Chinese seem to have brought up Sikkim and not Arunachal Pradesh back to the table during the recent visit of Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee to China. The belief was that China had implicitly recognised Indian sovereignty over Sikkim in 2003, and as such there was no dispute on the matter with China. China’s recognition of Sikkim was interpreted as a quid pro quo for India’s recognition of total Chinese sovereignty over Tibet in 2003.

    June 13, 2008

    Nathu La: Pass To Prosperity But Also A Challenge

    Nathu La, identified as the third mountain pass for border trade between India and China, is officially slated to open on July 6, 2006 after a gap of 44 years. Previous attempts to open the border pass had to be postponed due to lack of proper infrastructure. This time around, the infrastructure from the Indian side is complete. A field visit to Nathu La on June 25, 2006 revealed that the approach road has been constructed. And the warehouses, customs and administrative offices, banks etc. at Sherathang, the designated trade mart situated 5 km from Nathu La, have been completed.

    July 04, 2006