Reports: China helping Pakistan build bunkers along India border
China is helping its "all-weather friend" Pakistan build strong permanent bunkers and airports along its border with Rajasthan and Gujarat. Over 350 dugouts have been reportedly built in Pakistan with China's help. There has also been a significant increase in Chinese troop presence along the Indo-Pak border. Defense Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman has been apprised about the situation, according to sources.
Chinese-built bunkers tough to spot, well camouflaged
The estimated 350 bunkers built by China for Pakistan are difficult to locate as inconspicuous and well-camouflaged stones are used for their construction. Pakistan is also constructing defense canals, swamps and roadways to thwart any potential Indian military response. Sitharaman has visited the concerned areas on India's side of the border thrice and is receiving intelligence inputs on the subject, sources have revealed.
China building airports for Pakistan along India border
Over the past four months, the China has helped Pakistan build two runways close to the India border. One airbase is located 25km away from the Ghotaru border in Jaisalmer district, Rajasthan. The other airport is in Tharparkar, 25km away from Barmer, Rajasthan. Another airport is being built by Chinese soldiers in the Mithi region near Gujarat, 20km away from the Indian border.
Chinese troops spotted near Jaisalmer border
Sources said that during a flag meeting with Indian troops, Pakistani soldiers said the airports close to the border were being built to make it easier for Chinese oil companies to visit the locations. Reports suggest that Chinese soldiers are also upgrading Pakistani airbases in Karachi, Jacobabad, Quetta, Rawalpindi, Sargoda, and Peshawar. Meanwhile, Chinese soldiers have been spotted in Peerkamal and Cholistan, near Jaisalmer.
Chinese actions could be aimed at deterring Indian military offensive
The presence of Chinese troops along the India-Pakistan border and their role in constructing Pakistani military infrastructure signal Beijing's greater involvement in the security of its biggest regional partner. It also adds a new dimension to India's security calculus. It could act as a stronger deterrent for India to act militarily against Pakistan as this would risk conflict with China.