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China today said it was “ready to keep communication” with India on opening the Nathu La pass route for Kailash Mansarovar pilgrims.
The newly opened Sikkim route, which was more convenient for pilgrims than the other route through Lipulekh in Uttarakhand, was closed earlier this year amid the border stand-off at Doklam. The Lipulekh route was unaffected.
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said China “has long made efforts against all odds to provide to necessary convenience” for pilgrims. The route was suspended after India “trespassed” at Doklam, he said.
He added that “China stands ready to keep communication with the Indian side in regard to the opening of the pass and other issues relating to pilgrims”.
On China not providing hydrological data from the upper reaches of the Brahmaputra this year – under an agreement, Beijing is to provide data every year starting in April for the flood season – Geng said because of “upgrading and renovation” of the Chinese station, data could not be provided this year.