Bhutan King to arrive in New Delhi

Bhutan King to arrive in New Delhi

The King of Bhutan will on Tuesday commence his first visit to New Delhi after India and China had a 72-day-long military face-off at Doklam Plateau in the Himalayan Kingdom's western region.

Bhutanese King, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, along with his wife Pema Wangchuck and child Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck, will be on a four-day visit to New Delhi. The King will meet President Ram Nath Kovind, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Ministry of External Affairs said ipress releaseease on Monday.

Prime Minister will host a dinner in honour of the royal couple.

Bhutan transitioned from an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy in 2008 and now has a democratically elected parliament and a Government, currently led by Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay.

The King, however, continued to be the ceremmonial Head of State and hold considerable influence over internal and external affairs of the country.

"India and Bhutan enjoy unique ties of friendship, which are characterized by deep understanding and mutual trust. The visit of His Majesty the King of Bhutan is in keeping with the long standing tradition of regular high-level exchanges between the two countries," Raveesh Kumar, official spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs, said in New Delhi.

The Chinese People's Liberation Army personnel had come to Doklam Plateau a disputed territory on Bhutan-China border on June 16 and started building a road, brushing off protests by Royal Bhutan Army soldiers camping nearby. The Indian Army personnel from nearby Doka La post in Sikkim had intervened two days later, leading to the stand-off.

Though Beijing withdrew its troops from Doklam Plateau on August 28 to end the military stand-off, both New Delhi and Thimphu are worried over the Chinese PLA's move to deploy more troops in its forward posts close to the India-China-Bhutan tri-juinction boundary point. The PLA also purportedly intruded into the territory claimed by Thimphu along the disputed China-Bhutan boundary at least thrice in the recent weeks.

The issue is likely to be discussed when the King of Bhutan will have a meeting with the prime minister in New Delhi.

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