A day after NDTV reported that China has established a village within Bhutan’s territory, Bhutan’s Ambassador to India on Friday categorically denied the presence of any Chinese village inside Bhutan.
Earlier on Thursday, NDTV had reported that China had established a village two km inside Bhutan’s territory, very close to Doklam site where the Chinese and Indian militaries had a tense standoff in 2017.
NDTV’s anchor Vishnu Som took to Twitter to share images posted by a senior journalist with the Chinese state media on Thursday to claim that it was “clear evidence of Chinese land grabbing of Bhutan territory”.
1.This is an astounding tweet with clear evidence of a CHINESE LANDGRAB WITHIN BHUTANESE TERRITORY, app. 9km from the India-China faceoff site in Doklam. The map shown here by @shen_shiwei, a senior journalist with Chinese state media, indicates this village is 2 km inside Bhutan https://t.co/UdNtS309yM— Vishnu Som (@VishnuNDTV) November 19, 2020
Further, Som shared a series of maps to claim that the Chinese had transgressed deep into Bhutanese territories, which is also strategically close to Indian borders in the Eastern sector.
3. For reference – the big red box is where the Doklam face off between India and China took place a few years ago. And the small box is where the village is located per @shen_shiwei pic.twitter.com/CzNqZlz4Lq— Vishnu Som (@VishnuNDTV) November 19, 2020
Som said that the Chinese village of Pangda lies two kilometres within Bhutanese territory and is an indicator of what India has always feared – “salami slicing” by the Chinese. “Salami Slicing” refers to Beijing’s attempts to cut into Indian and Bhutanese territory.
However, rejecting media reports of China occupying Bhutanese territories, Bhutan’s Ambassador to India clarified that no village has been set up by China inside Bhutan.
There is no Chinese village inside Bhutan: Bhutan Ambassador to India, to ANI on a report that China has set up a village inside Bhutan, 9 kilometers from Doklam face-off site— ANI (@ANI) November 20, 2020
CGTN journalist breaks the story, NDTV latches onto it
Interestingly, Shen Shiwei, the Chinese journalist who first put out images of alleged Chinese village inside Bhutanese land, has silently deleted his posts making such claims. However, NDTV, which has based its entire assertions on the claim made by the Chinese journalist continues to peddle the misinformation despite clarification from the Bhutan government.
“We have permanent residents living in the newly established Pangda village. It is along the valley where 35 km south to Yadong county,” said Shen Shiwei, CGTN News Producer sharing a map to show the precise location of the settlement.
It is suspected that China could well be playing the dirty games by peddling false information into the media regarding its transgression into Bhutan to make a strong point to India. However, the likes of NDTV and other Indian media networks seems to have fallen prey for Chinese propaganda and indulged in reporting unverified news reports on Chinese presence inside Bhutan.