The McMahon Line : History and Inception

The Mc Mohan Line is the line of demarcation between Tibet and Assam in the North-East frontier which was decided in the year 1914 in a secret negotiation between British Hency Mc Mohan and Tibetan Lochen Shatra as a wrap up deal. The meeting was held on McMahon’s suggestion to China’s supremacy over Tibet and the outer-inner dissection of Tibet.

On the map attached to the draft approved in the meeting, two lines:- one red and the other blue, were drawn. The red line indicated Tibet as a geographical and political unit, and the blue line divided the Outer Tibet. In the porch, the red line showed the peak of the Himalayas, roughly in compliance to the McMahon Line except in the Tawang tract where the McMahon Line touched the Tawang tract, entailing that the Tawang tract as a part of Tibetan province. Tawang tract was not positioned within the British-Indian province. But as far the purpose of the Shimla consultation, the McMahon Line was not even acknowledged by the British-Indian government. Even after the Shimla consultation on the official maps by the Survey of India, the McMohan Line was not publicized. Still the Tibetan continued to apply their administrative jurisdiction in the ethnic areas. Henceforth the Shimla consultation went down in times gone by as an unaccomplished mission.

As per Aichison’s Treaties the first official record Volume XIV of the 1929 did not highlight the the McMohan Line. It is worth to be mentioned that Dalai Lama even accepted the logic association between the status of Tibet and the legality of the border line. In the revised publication, this border line has been mentioned .In the Shimla consultations, the parties discussed an accord on the status of Tibet and the boundary of Tibet with both China and India. Nevertheless, it was still marked as “Un demarcated Boundary.” The original line drawn by on the Shimla Treaty map starts at 27°44’30’’N, starting a junction between Bhutan, China, and India, and pull out eastwards. But in the modified version of the border line, it progresses towards the Bhutan-China-India junction north to 27°48’N.This border line is the foundation of the Indian assert to the area which was previously known as the North-East Frontier Agency; and is now known as the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The line was drawn with the absolute cartographic methods and the geography coverage and the scale used was – eight miles to an inch.

India avers that the intention of the accord was to track the highest crests of the Himalayas. India asserts were that South of the high crests should have been Indian Territory and north of the high crests should be Chinese territory. Indian statement is that the two armies should be divided from each other by the highest mountains in the world.

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