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.