Ed­i­to­rial

Alive - - Contents -

The Modi Gov­ern­ment’s pol­icy to­wards China goes on two tan­gents. The De­fence Min­istry and its an­a­lysts are al­ways in an of­fen­sive mood: China is a po­ten­tial en­emy, con­flicts on LAC are ex­ag­ger­ated, Chi­nese friend­ship with Pak­istan is a strate­gic dan­ger to In­dia, Navies of In­dia, US and Ja­pan should join to ward off Chi­nese threat.

On the other hand, the in­for­mal sum­mit of Modi and Xi in Wuhan, away from the busy cap­i­tal Bei­jing, was frank and friendly. In a re­laxed at­mos­phere where busi­ness was mixed with en­ter­tain­ment, Xi said: “Our two coun­tries' in­flu­ence the world, and in our re­gion, the in­flu­ence is steadily on the rise. Look­ing ahead, we see vast space and a bright fu­ture for China-In­dia co­op­er­a­tion." Modi out­lined the five pil­lars of In­dia-China Co­op­er­a­tion: “Thought, Com­mu­ni­ca­tion, Co­op­er­a­tion, Dream and Com­mit­ment." He said: "We as re­spon­si­ble lead­ers rep­re­sent 40% of World pop­u­la­tion and this is not just a meet­ing of two lead­ers, but I see it from the per­spec­tive of a his­toric and cul­tural legacy…"

How­ever, de­spite the bon­homie and en­ter­tain­ing en­vi­ron­ment, what has the Modi-Xi sum­mit pro­duced in con­crete terms? Noth­ing. And noth­ing was ex­pected as it was an in­for­mal sum­mit and no joint dec­la­ra­tion was made.

Yet it has made an al­ti­tu­di­nal change in In­dia-China re­la­tions. The two sides are con­vinced that only talks, ad­just­ments and ac­com­mo­da­tion could find long-term so­lu­tion. Some ground re­al­i­ties have to be recog­nised for solv­ing the prob­lems be­tween In­dia and China. China de­feated In­dia in the 1962 war. And In­dia has been arm­ing her­self to meet any fu­ture Chi­nese ag­gres­sion. No doubt today Chi­nese army can­not ad­vance to­wards In­dian ter­ri­to­ries as in 1962. But nei­ther can In­dia ad­vance to take pos­ses­sion of ter­ri­to­ries she claims in pos­ses­sion of China on the Line of Ac­tual Con­trol (LAC). We are stronger than we were in 1962, but not strong enough to wage a suc­cess­ful war to avenge the 1962 de­feat. China has the geo­graph­i­cal strate­gic ad­van­tage. The LAC where Chi­nese troops are massed is at the higher side of the moun­tain slopes and to fight them by ad­vanc­ing from the lower side is dif­fi­cult for the In­dian Army.

How­ever, Chi­nese too have their com­pul­sions to keep peace with In­dia and have friendly re­la­tions. The group­ing of In­di­aUS-Ja­pan on the sea is a threat to China in her am­bi­tion of ex­pan­sion to­wards the is­land na­tions and Africa. So China wants to woo In­dia away from the three-na­tion ef­fort to con­tain her.

As it is, there are no un­solv­able prob­lem be­tween In­dia and China in their ter­ri­to­rial dis­pute. And USA is not a trust­wor­thy friend if we de­cide on a con­fronta­tion with China.

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