Bhutan and India- Friendship must be dealt with caution. - Seeker's Thoughts

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Bhutan and India- Friendship must be dealt with caution.

Bhutan and India – Apple of discard

The BRO or border road organization is an Indian agency, which builds road in border area.
The Border Roads Organization, which helps build Bhutanese roads under Project Dantak, decided in July to make markers in shades of the Indian tricolour, it raised red flags among the Bhutanese on social media. 

Citizens were worried that this was an attempt by India to impose its flag on their countryside. This wasn’t a first incident, people earlier also felt that India is tempering with “sovereignty, security and self-sufficiency” of Bhutan as Bhutan is going through democratic transition.

What is the need?
The upcoming months may also be a useful to revise India’s Bhutan policy and address several issues that have come up in the past few years —
for example, the hydropower projects where delays in constructing and commissioning in Bhutan by Indian companies have led to the country’s burgeoning national debt. Although the government agreed to raise tariffs for the original hydropower plant in Chukha (by about 30 paisa per unit) in February this year, other tariffs will need to be renegotiated too.
In addition, India’s power-surplus status and the advent of other renewable energies like wind and solar power will make it more difficult for Bhutan to ensure that its hydropower sector becomes profitable. And unless India finds ways to help, it will be accused of the same sort of “debt-trapping” that China is accused of today.
 India also needs to focus on policing cross-border trade better.
The goods and services tax still hurts Bhutanese exporters, and demonetization has left lasting scars on the banking system.
India Bhutan Relationship – An Overview-
 Himalaya kingdom of Bhutan and the republic of India have been closely together traditionally.  India and Bhutan shares same border and special relationship as well as both countries have had strong diplomatic ties for decades.
2007 treaty- Under the 2007 India-Bhutan friendship treaty, the two sides have agreed to cooperate closely with each other on issues relating to their national interests. The language of 2007 treaty is meant to respect the sensitivities of Bhutan regarding its sovereignly. But the reality is that the Indian military is virtually responsible for protecting Bhutan from the kind of external threats.


Bhutan has preserved its isolation from the outside world, staying out of international organization and maintaining few bilateral relations. In 1910, Bhutan became a protectorate of British India meaning that while it existed as separate entity, much of its foreign policy, economy and defense was controlled by the Britishers.

Bhutan is the largest beneficiary of India’s foreign aid-
Bhutan is the largest beneficiary of India's foreign aid. In the 2012-2013 fiscal report, India's contribution of Bhutan totaled up to 600 million USD in 2013-2016.

Some  Other issues
Doklam issue--- In June 2017, Chinese Army Construction Party had entered the Doklam area and attempted to construct a road. Royal Bhutan Army patrol had attempted to dissuade them from this unilateral activity. Later Bhutan underlined that the construction of the road inside Bhutanese territory was a direct violation of the 1988 and 1998 agreement between Bhutan and China affected the process of demarcating the boundary between two countries----since these developments India and Bhutan have been in continues contact, giving a view of India's role in Bhutan's security and matters of mutual interest.
Current situation between India-Bhutan.- During the golden jubilee year of relationship, India Bhutan to hold discussion on issue of mutual interest, and advancing the exemplary ties of friendship for the benefit of both countries. 
However, there should be caution while dealing with Bhutan. India needs to preserve its image that it does not lure countries into debt trap as well as India always has respected other nations ‘ sovereignty, security and self sufficiency’.