Nathu La passed
In 1975, I ordered the occupation of the heights east of the Jelap La in order to dominate the pass. From 1981 to 1987, there were 8 rounds of fruitless Indo-Chinese talks. In 1988, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi visited China, and signed agreements on cooperation in the fields of science and technology and civil aviation. In 2003, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee visited China. In July 2007, the Nathu La was reopened for inter-border trade. Strategically, China has built a railway line to Lhasa and is extending it to the Chumbi valley. China is rapidly developing the infrastructure in Tibet. New airfields and roads are being constructed in the vicinity of the Indian border. China dams the Sutlej River and talks of building a dam across the Tsang Po (Brahmaputra). China and Pakistan are widening the Karakoram Road and intend to connect it to Gwadar Port in the Gulf of Oman in order to give China access to the Arabian Sea. China is working for closer ties with Pakistan, as also with Bangladesh.
Image: TheBeijing-to-Lhasa express train on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway makes itsway across a valley close to the Tibetan town of Nagqu, nearly 15,000feet above sea level. The railway is the first to link Tibet to theoutside world, including Beijing, 2,500 km away. -- (Photograph copyright Associated Press. Unauthorised reproduction prohibited.)