Chumbi valley in Tibet at the intersection of India (Sikkim), Bhutan and China (Tibet) in the Himalayas. It is very narrow. China stationed its military in this area is seen as tense zone. The valley is named after plant Pedicularis chumbica which grows there. Formed by the passage of the Amo (Torsa) River. Two main passes between India and China open up here:
a) Nathu La Pass – Nathu La pass that connects Tibet with Sikkim.
b) Jelep La Pass – between India(sikkim) & Tibet. The Menmecho Lake lies below the Jelep La Pass.
India trains the Bhutanese army through the Indian Military Training Team (IMTRAT), in Bhutan.
Why China is interested in Chumbi Valley?
1. China gains proximity to India’s North-East and Siliguri Corridor, which connects North-Eastern states to India and Nepal to Bhutan.
2. China gets closer to Bangladesh
3. China gets a better hold over Tibet, thus weakening any potential cards which India would want to play at a later stage.