Preparing for the Worst
Arecent report coauthored by leading Indian policy experts, diplomats and military personnel, including Shyam Saran, former foreign secretary and special envoy to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, contends that India cannot “entirely dismiss the possibility of a major military offensive in Arunachal Pradesh or Ladakh.” The independent report aims to explore India’s foreign policy vis-à-vis an emerg- ing China. The report hints at a possible Chinese military offensive and recommends “a mix of defensive and offensive capabilities” as a possible Indian reaction to restore the status quo. In terms of geographically locating a possible attack, the report claims that the most likely areas would be those parts of the Line of Actual Control where both sides have different notions of where the LAC actu- ally runs. It is also recommended that India possibly create an insurgency in Chinese occupied areas to counter a Chinese offensive and push it back. A need to improve communication lines, establish a Maritime Commission and urgently expand naval presence in the Indian Ocean was also discussed.
Titled ‘Non-alignment 2.0: A Foreign and Strategic Policy for the 21st century’, the report was unveiled at a panel discussion in which National Security Adviser, Shiv Shankar Menon and his immediate predecessors MK Narayanan and Brajesh Mishra were also present.