Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman Reviews Operational Readiness Of Tezpur Airbase

Sitharaman with troops

"So I say "namaste"," the Indian defence minister said.

Another source was quoted as saying by the Times of India that Sitharaman was indeed courageous as there is no woman in the senior ranks of the Communist Party and government in China.

Sitharaman then asked, "What would you say in Chinese?"

Earlier, Nirmala Sitharam said she waved at the Chinese soldiers from the across the border who were reportedly taking her pictures.

The video had been posted on Sitharaman's official Twitter handle and the report about her visit had been widely carried in the Indian media.

A senior officer of Chinese Army is seen introducing his colleagues and their nature of work to Sitharaman and she suddenly greets them saying "Namste, do you know what namaste is?".

"Sino-Indian relations is entering a new era of crisis management where Indian leadership should seek to fix stagnated ties", a Chinese expert commented on Sunday in China Military following Indian defense minister's wave to Chinese soldiers and greeting them in the traditional Indian way of "Namaste" at the border.

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Mrs Sitharaman also visited the Gajraj Corps Head Quarters where she was briefed by GOC Gajraj Corps Lt Gen AS Bedi on the overall security situation in Assam and the Kameng Sector of Arunachal Pradesh and the operational preparedness of the Corps. "Good luck to your country", replied the Chinese commander.

Beijing often referred to the 1890 Britain-China treaty during the Doklam standoff stating that it has defined the Sikkim section of the boundary with Tibet, therefore the border in that area has been settled.

India's Economic Times newspaper reported that Sitharaman's trip on Saturday was the first high-level visit to the area following the 73-day stand-off between Indian and Chinese troops at Doklam, which ended on August 28 following a mutual agreement between the two countries.

"This is commonly regarded as the attitude of the Narendra Modi government".

The Sino-Indian boundary stretches over 3,488-km-long border, 220-km of which falls in Sikkim.

India should "consider deepening strategic security communication with China, which can enhance mutual trust between China and India", urges the Global Times in a separate article, an editorial.

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