More churning in South Asia : India bolsters defences on China border

June 12, 2009

Power play in South Asia is always a delicate dance and anything that happens between India and China will likely play itself out across the region, not the least in Pakistan, Beijing’s all weather friend.

And things are starting to move on the India-China front. We carried a report this weekabout India’s plan to increase troop levels and build more airstrips in the remote state of Arunachal Pradesh, a territory disputed by China.  New Delhi planned to deploy two army divisions, the report quoted Arunachal governor J.J. Singh as saying.

Other reports in the Indian media said the air force was beefing up its base in Tejpur in the northeast with Su-30 fighter planes, the newest in its armoury. The HIndustan Times said it was part of a decision to move advanced assets close to the Chinese  border.  The IAF base in Tejpur which is in the state of Assam is within striking distance of the border with China in Arunachal Pradesh.

Arunachal evokes especially painful memories for India – for this is where the Chinese advanced deep inside, inflicting heavy casualties on poorly-equipped Indian soldiers in the 1962 war. The Chinese retreated but have refused to recognise Arunachal as part of India, and that along with other disputed stretches of their 3,000 km border has remained at the heart of more than four decades of distrust.

Indeed the renewed Indian defence deployment comes days after the air force chief said China posed a bigger and more potent threat than Pakistan.

And what of the Chinese? What do they have to say to the noises coming out of India?  While official China hasn’t appeared to react publicly,  the Chinese media has responded. The Global Times said in a hard-hitting editorial the Indian government’s tough new posture ”is dangerous if it is based on the anticipation China will cave in”.

China is in a different league, it says, by way of international influence, overall national power and economic scale and India’s politicians don’t seem to have realised this. On the contrary, they seem to think that they would be doing China a huge favour simply by not joining the so-called  “ring around China” established by the United States and Japan, it says.

China is not going to compromise on its border dispute with India, and it was up to New Delhi to figure out why it can’t have stable relations with many of its neighbours such as Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka while Beijing can, the Global Times says.

The Global Times is a popular tabloid and has been taking a strident tone on foreign policy issues. But it is published by the Communist Party mouthpiece, the People’s Daily, and can’t really be ignored.

Are we seeing the beginning of a more open, declared rivalry  between the world’s two most populous countries? Where does Pakistan fit in all this? Is New Delhi going to organise its energies and defences to meet the perceived threat from China and leave Pakistan to figure out its own troubles?

And what of the Chinese? Are they going to turn up the heat on India? As this analysis notes, New Delhi is already wary of China’s role in Pakistan, and now reinforcing its fear of strategic encirclement are Beijing’s expanding ties with India’s smaller neighbours such as Sri Lanka and Nepal.

 [Indian troops at the Indian-China trade route at Nathu-La; an Indian and a Chinese soldier also in Nathu-La] 

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57 comments

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Bad move from India’s part. This move would only increase mistrust and tension between both militaries. And for the foreseeable future, China will be in a league of its own politically, economically, and diplomatically compared to India.

Posted by JJ | Report as abusive

India, a sub-continent made up of different racial and religious groups put together by the Brits as a country. The Indians consequently regard themselves as inheritors of the British Empire in the East which would include Burma, Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka while Sikkim was already grabbed in the 1970s. The Indians would dearly liked to have grabbed Tibet as well but that was beyond them in the 1950s and even more so now that it’s under Chinese jurisdiction. The Chinese want Arunachal Pradesh because they regard it as part of South Tibet and the people there are Mongoloid in race rather than the Caucasian which northern Indians are (South Indians such as Tamils are a different race and another story). India has been able to manipulate all of its immediate neighbors save China through the use of subterfuge carried out by RAW and other Indian bodies. Infiltration of China is not that easy as most Indians don’t learn Chinese as a second language and their people are easy to spot as they don’t blend in. Much of the Indian spying of China is done by traders and by the use of satellites. Hence India’s insecurity about China is two-fold: (1)envy about China’s economic and military progress and, (2) fear owing more to a lack of knowledge about that latter resulting in even less ability on the part of India to influence matters in China. In short, India has discovered that playing with the big boys is not the same as stealing candy from babies.

Posted by The_Observer | Report as abusive

Countries reinforce their defense installations, upgrade them and modernize them from time to time. I don’t think Chinese should think too much about it. China is a recognized semi-super power. They know that India will not engage in unnecessary military activities inside its border. India has a leadership that seeks peace with everyone, including Pakistan which has done the most betrayals. Every country has disputes with their neighbors. That includes China too. These disputes involve water and other resource sharing, claims on no-man’s lands, criminal activities like drug trafficking etc. These should not be construed as problems with neighbors.No one can figure out what the Chinese leadership has in mind. North Eastern India has been suffering from insurgency for a long time and there is definitely their covert involvement in that region. And intelligence agencies might have unearthed something that is not known to everyone. India might be bolstering its positions from that stand point.Like Reagan said, one should negotiate anything from a position of strength and not weakness. India should invest more in defense in order to protect its territorial integrity. If others react, they are free to do so.

China is in a different league! Indeed China is in a different league. No one can question that.Supplying missile technology, nuclear technology to rogue, terrorist countries. Selling fake drugs in Africa with labels saying “Made in India”. Being a world leader in not recognizing intellecual property right and patents, the list is long.What does China have in common with Pakistan? Language, shared heritage, culture, food, religion? None. The only reason for China to sponsor the most notorious terrorist brreding haven in the world is to hurt India.Indian military moves in NE India are only defensive. India knows it is in a “different league”!Paks also love to cite India having trouble with neighbors is proof that India is bad. If you use that logic China has disputes with Japan, India and oppresses Tibetan Buddhists on one border and Uighur muslims on one border and sponsors mega- terrorist country in one border. Not very flattering.

India shouldn\’t have been so vocal about this move. Just slently put those defences and see what comes up. There is no doubt China is a much stronger country. However, the spehere of influence that China talks about, doesn;t make much sense. Given a chance, almost all the western countries would side with India. So would Japan. The US would have to be careful with all the trade balance it has with China. An Indo-China war has all the ingredients to culminate into a world war

SanjeevChina cannot be blamed for anything, India is also playing the same game. Have a look at the link below, this is the website of Indian Embassy in Kabul,Afghanistan:http://meakabul.nic.in  /On the left, click on the tab ‘consulates’It is ironic that India has four consulates in Mazar-e-Sharif, Jalalabad, Herat and Kandhar along with the embassy in Kabul. India is also jockeying for power, creating influence in Afghanistan and trying strategic encirclement of Pakistan. And it is only going to get worse, the Indian embassy bombing in Kabul is a reminder of what power play can lead to. In other words, if India wants to play with fire, it must be ready to face the consequences.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

The article reminded me of the “Hindi-Chini Bhai-Bhai” slogan. The war that ensued has kept India wary of China’s intentions. It is a country not to be trusted given its past actions and current posture by circling India. China has consistently being building its influence in India’s so called circle of influence i.e. the SAARC countries. Also why does China need a sophisticated listening center in Burma? Hindi-Chini can never be bhai bhai…

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Mr. SanjeevYou removed my earlier comment, however I have to state the following;The Sino-Indian rivalry led to an arms race between India and Pakistan. When India beefs up its defence against China, Pakistan gets alarmed and consequently bolsters its defence. But this time around another player, a super power (United States) is also present in the region. Both US and China have an interest in Pakistan’s stability.The current military posturing by India comes at a bad time. See how heads will spin in the Singh government in New Delhi, nerve racking US pressure to start dialogue with Pakistan even when Pakistan has released main suspect in Mumbai case at one end. At the other a resurgent China will further the strategic encirclement of India and that threat will keep increasing. I dont see India becoming some sort of ‘super power’ or even coming close to something like that anytime soon. And that is enough good news for Pakistan.Thank you and hope this time i didnt offend you, so please dont delete my comment.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

We have an interesting discussion going on, so let’s stick to the topic. I’ve had people asking me why some coments are getting deleted or not being used.I’d like to reinforce the message that comments that are off-topic, offensive, or ones that can incite passions will not be published.We are looking for comments that advance the debate, not those that go over the same issue over and over again each time there is a new post up. I think if we don’t have anything new to say on a topic, perhaps best to hold our horses.It is not question of offending me as somebody has suggested, it is a question of offending a people, religion or a country that we won’t allow on this platform, whether it relates to people from India, Pakistan, China or anywhere else for that matter.

Posted by Sanjeev Miglani | Report as abusive

China’s military power is small compared to its diplomatic influence and economic power, but it would be foolish to think of them as militarily weak. If India is to make such a provocative move, then it should only do so after thoroughly weighing the consequences. Remember, a person with a gun is more likely to be shot. I agree with an earlier post that said, India should have moved more quietly. This is what China tries to do when it advances its military assets. China even delays certain weapons aquisitions to a more opportune diplomatic time. Isn’t there supposed to be skill and elegance in India’s diplomatic corps as well?

Posted by A.J. | Report as abusive

Since the railway opened the Chinese have been militarizing Tibet bolstering India’s fears. India was bound to respond. It’s military presence in the North-East is fairly anemic anyway. Even now a few squadrons isn’t going to do much.

Posted by Keith | Report as abusive

To put India’s move in perspective. First of all it is a defensive reaction to increased military incursion/activity by the chinese on the border, that has made the Indian’s nervous. Secondly China has massively improved the transport infrastructure (Roads/airfields and ofcourse the railway line) in the name of development of its border regions, over the last decade. It has invested hugely in the modernisation of its military as well through the same decade. All India is doing is reacting to threat perception from a more aggressive stance by China at the border and India is behind the curve and as somebody stated earlier less accomplished in the art of diplomatic subterfuge.

Posted by MG | Report as abusive

So India’s relationship with her neighbors is bad while China’s relationship with it neighbors is good ? How about the relationship between China and India ? Is that good or bad ? Did China figure out why that is ? And China is complaining about being surrounded. Who is surrounding them ? Are these China’s neighbors or US’s neighbors ? It is a fun topological problem…

Posted by Bill Rich | Report as abusive

Let’s not forget that China has the largest (numerically) army in the world. There are more Chinese soldiers than US, India and Pakistan combined. And China had wars with India. Russia and Vietnam since, and help North Korea to invade South Korea in the 50′s.Oh, by the way, Nepal was the one that tried to grab Tibet, not India. But that was before year 78 of the Republic of China, and should be forgotten by all Chinese.

Posted by Bill Rich | Report as abusive

The northeast insurgency is a perennial headache and Indian military wants to seal off the borders to cut off the escape routes. Some bloggers are falsely pumping up Indias ego citing wild accusations of its regional aspirations. Far from it India wants the smaller neighbors to get prosperous and be peaceful. It has enough diversity in situ within its borders and as a result is not looking for any more by occupying the neighbors lands.Past decade, China and India are remembered in many capitals of developed world while discussing from economy to global warming. Having been put on a pedestal they have continued with their recourse of economic agenda along with steps to boost their mutual trade; surprisingly they deviated from any rhetoric. Its ridiculous to think that either country will go for any military engagement for any reason.

Sanjiv,My response to your questions is as follows,1) Are the Chinese going to turn up the heat on India?- The Chinese already have turned up the heat. The Chinese have strong military presence in Tibet minutes away from attacking India. China recently tried to block India’s attempt to borrow money in ADB which as meant for development in India’s north-east region. With better military and economic strength than India, China is going to flex its muscles. China’s slogan of “Peaceful rise” is an oxymoron.As India grows at its pace – no one can reverse it – it’ll be interesting to see how the two countries keep their tempers down. It’s natural for India to bolster its defenses. Why should it be seen as a provocation when China already has more military presence on the same border?2) Are we seeing the beginning of a more open, declared rivalry between the world’s two most populous countries?- No, it’ll not be an open rivalry. India-China relationship is very nuanced because they collaborate, compete and blow heat all at the same time. On issues related to climate change and global trade they collaborate. On issues related to access to energy and markets they compete and on geo-politics they blow heat against each other.We’ll also see stronger relationship between India and ASEAN countries. The smaller nations in ASEAN welcome India whole-heartedly and their interests are not limited to trade and finance. Many of them happen to be located near South China sea. Now, should we read between the lines here?3) Is New Delhi going to organize its energies and defences to meet the perceived threat from China and leave Pakistan to figure out its own troubles?- Yes and No. From an Indian perspective, China is a non-transparent state with global ambitions while Pakistan is a ‘rent-seeking’ state with nuisance value. Both need different strategies.

Posted by Nikhil | Report as abusive

China has been steadfastly buliding its infrastructure in southern tibet and has recently started to readopt a more strident position on Arunachal.It has been intensifying strategic relations with bangladesh(offer of nuclear power),Sri Lanka(help to finish LTTE for hambantota port facilities),Nepal,Pakistan(where American influence is increasing manifold)…if China wishes to physically harm India,the easiest first step would be to reintensify their support for NE insurgent gruops…in such a scenario,it is important we develop our conventional and non conventional power in this region…also important we give the appropiate support to the currently India friendly Bangladesh establishment,keep our eyes and ears open in burma,and ensure that we have leverage over the various groupings in Nepal.In the current economic situation wherein US is dependant on China,we should keep a low profile while doing all this…the current situation in Af-pak,central asia,iran,nepal ie extended neighbourhood is very complicated especially with big power influence,so it is important that we remain assertive,but not negatively aggressive.

Posted by pb | Report as abusive

What is wrong in moving assets within ones own border? Yes, China may have more military power than India, on paper at least. In this world, it is about posture and not actual consequences. Those who argue that India should not mess with the ‘big boys’ should also remember that no big boy can ever dream of controlling or hurting India. The same reasons people cite for India’s weakness is actually its strength. Try forcibly controlling an upwardly mobile, comparatively freer society that has a million Gods and a thousand mother tongues.The days of conquistadors and colonists are over. Bomb China and your grocery store will be empty ; bomb India and your credit cards stop working.China is free to consolidate its land by building infrastructure. Is this only a one way street?Diplomacy is strength derived from physical power.

Posted by Husker | Report as abusive

many people are assuming india’s actions as provocative.I am still trying to find Chinese military buildup in Tibet. Unless we know that detail it would be very difficult to say whether this is provocative or reactive action.I would appreciate if anyone could throw light on Chinese military buildup in Tibet. (Btn i would have also wished to see that information in Sanjeev’s analysis)

Posted by chirkut | Report as abusive

Sanjeev:Are we seeing the beginning of a more open, declared rivalry between the world’s two most populous countries?The rivalry is going on very much, masked thus far by the economic surge of both countries.Indian move is nothing but symbolic and will do nothing to neutralize Chinese well thought long-term policies. Nehru’s NAM and India-China brother-brother pathetic unpragmatic vision layed the ground work for the late realization by India for the need to change the foreign policy but Indian response to Chinese policies military/economic developments have been sluggish. China is a bigger power than India, but India does not want to let China threaten Indian interests. Chinese encirclement of India is happening in the name of buying Indian not so-powerful and needy neighbours like Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Burma each for 1billion$—even Bangladesh and all these countries either consider India an enemy or need to be friend of a powerful country and China fulfills their aspirations. India lacked vision and gave away mostly negative points, using sports parlance. Typical Chinese moves to buy these small countries are helping them with sea ports or giving military hardware. Outrageous Indian policy outcome is COCO Island that Nehru gifted to Burma, and Burma is letting China use the island against Indian interests. Indian policies have done nothing to allay anyone’s fear of India as a regional bully. Certain territorial problems have been inherited from British times and more got added to India. The problems are going to stay for indefinite time and the wisdom demands India must not be in a position of weakness. India is not in this position yet. Economic growth of India has helped India a lot. But a radical change in policies is needed. India does not want to be a world-superpower but will not be bullied in the region. India needs to make bold moves specific to neutralize China–making half hearted symbolic moves serves no purpose and can hurt. When the opponent is immoral as has been widely believed in the case of China, task becomes harder.Where does Pakistan fit in all this? Pakistan is benifitting nothing out of this China vs India rivalry. Pakistan is confused lot and has narrow vision. Pakistan looks up to China as God almighty, Indian enemy and for money. Yes they got Islamic bomb. But if Pakistan wants to make positive development and be a democratic, not just a pawn, Pak is better off with India than China. China’s worst fear is Pakistan-Indian friendship and has brainwashed Pakistan into 1965 war and now into continued hostility against India.Is New Delhi going to organise its energies and defences to meet the perceived threat from China and leave Pakistan to figure out its own troubles?Yes. NE should be militarized much more as a defensive measure, nothing else.And what of the Chinese? Are they going to turn up the heat on India? Chinese are going full throttle at diplomatic, economic and military fronts against India. Yes they can turn a the heat a notch up but India has lot of scope for that. But the idea should be get India-China relations to be in positive directions despite all differences. Progressive India and China are not getting into open wars.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

China, most certainly is ahead of India in terms of of international influence, overall national power and economic scale but I believe that India will catch up with China sooner than most expect it to. I say this because India has some very favorable fundamentals when compared to China i.e Demographics in terms of age, More local consumption & less dependence on exports and it’s strong Democratic credentials.If one talks about relations with their neighbors, who exactly does China have good relations with? North Korea, a universally accepted rogue state & Pakistan, arguably a rogue state. Japan, South Korea & Taiwan detest China & the rest (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia etc.) also mistrust it deeply. In such a scenario, it can be argued that China could be encircled just as easily as India.However, I believe that going forward, more than anything else, India-China relations will be dictated by economic relations between the 2 countries & the way I see it, those relations are getting and will keep getting stronger. India could potentially be the biggest market for China’s durable consumer goods & the Chinese very well know that. As India & China do more business with each other, the border dispute will become increasingly insignificant & easier to get resolved diplomatically.

Posted by Mortal | Report as abusive

Sanjeev,The Chinese do not respect weakness or talking for the sake of asking them to be nice to Indians, because it is not happening, not ever.The expansionist Chinest are more than happy to claim any inch of soil on which a country does not affirm their sovereignty.The only thing that will work with the Chinese is diplomacy backedup with an extremely large, capable and high tech deterrent that can inflict huge damage. India should continue to massively upgrade its military complex for it to retain any sort of bargaining or diplomatic credibility.Pakistan need not be afraid, India has no grand plan of invading or attacking Pakistan, unprovoked. India has even brushed off so many terrorist attacks and shown inhuman restraint. It is best if Pakistan focuses on productive endeavors and tries making friends with India, rather antagonize India by using China as a hostile friend against India.The extremely short sighted Pakistani Army Punjabi Fauji’s in Rawalpindi and Islamabad have a tight grip on public opinion in Pakistan and want to maintain India as an enemy and want to ensure that China maintains an enemy of India as well.Given that India is a secular, plural democracy with many religions and cultures, It is most unfortunate that the Chinese don’t truly understand what a kind and compassionate neighbour that India really is.

Posted by Global Watcher | Report as abusive

i don’t know what political clout china has ?? Did they have any political strength to stop the Indo-US nuclear deal. To refresh the minds of online trolls, the permanent security council seat was offered to India NOT china in the 50s. It was India which recommended china for the seat, while the whole world was opposed to China’s induction.The economic clout article was scene in some unknown paper published in China by the communist forces, another plain propaganda !!Well, I am not surprised, China knows that they cannot force India to neither give them the business India gets nor the Southern tip Tibet (Arunachal Pradesh, Which is under Indian control). May be in the 60s, It would have worked, but I am sorry, this is 2009 !!China’s big number games don’t work either, may be it might work for online trolls who scavenge around for worthless news.

Posted by Bharat | Report as abusive

Sanjeev,I’d recommend the following book by Guy Sorman titled “The Empire of Lies.” This author has been to the hinter lands of China and reveals a very different picture. In general India is castigated for its penury and poverty, in addition to AIDS, illiteracy etc. What this book reveals is a problem much worse than India. And the Chinese political party has been crafty enough to hide it from the outside world. Also read Jared Diamond’s “Collapse” which talks about environmental disasters in the world, past and present. He looks at how environmental destruction led to the collapse of empires and countries in the past and correlates that to today’s big powers. He has a big chapter on China’s environmental problem, which can bring about a terrible collapse. One thing is for sure – world media has been blind folded by the Chinese authorities who have been persistent on showing only a projected image of itself while hiding a lot of trash. Piled up trash one day will surface and it will be impossible to control it. China, though boasts great military etc, is no comparison to the Western powers who have all round development. My worry is that when the Chinese authorities will find it impossible to control their internal problems, they will divert the attention by engaging in conflicts with others. India stands on its war path head on. From that stand point, India has to be very careful and cautious. India is surrounded by danger from all angles. Anything that goes wrong in its neighborhood has dire consequences for India. However, India, IMO, should not take any belligerent stance when it knows that it has countries with leaders made up of unstable mindset surround it.India’s democracy, free press and rights are very important and take precedence over all the other problems that it has. If India bolsters its military strength as a result, it should be understandable.

The reality today is that India has the means and methods to decimate China militarily. China knows very well that apart from making noises and supporting insurgency movements, there is very little that they could do. Since Indian missiles can reach Beijing, the conventional two million men PLA is redunant.

Posted by Vikram | Report as abusive

India will decimate under chinese attack ; unless india makes first nuke strike on china and cripples its cyberwarfare capability also by hacking and unenabling china’s computers and communications, china will 100% plus emerege as a winner; china has money, industry toproduce huge qtys of military equipment very fast. Believe me I’m always amused by chinese industrial techniques etc. And dono forget Taiwan’s smart businessmen are also playing a very big role in China’seconomic muscle; Actually Taiwan businessmen control muchof PRC’s industries and even though on the surface ofit China and Taiwan are enemies as long as aligning against india is concerned BOTH are brothers !India should NOT trade and invest with China; India is feeding its #1 enemy huge amounts of money and keepingchinese industries running and workers employed whileindia’s own workers are languishing. Indian productionmethods of industrial goods are totally absolute compared to china’s. So unless the nukes are called inthere is NO way for india to win a conventional war.Is india prepared to strike first??

Posted by jjmk4546 | Report as abusive

@jjmkWe are not talking about war…we are talking about defenses. we lost 1962 because of poor preparation. That is why we are strengthening our defenses in eastern sector specially with more reports of Chinese intrusion inside indian territory.

Posted by chirkut | Report as abusive

India should strengthen its military in areas such as AP if it feels so. Given the current scenario in South Asia, India should be armed in the best possible way to fend off any hostile act right in its tracks. The same can apply to other nations also, as every nation has the right to defend its sovereignty against aggressors.

Posted by Hari | Report as abusive

No one seems to be talking bout loobying and support from other member nations. BOTH Inida and China had adequate strength to blow each other up,it is only the lobbying and support of other countries that can shift the ball in China or India’s court.

Posted by Yudhist | Report as abusive

My Indian friends, we most certainly agree with you, but we think that the author is very much misguided in alleging that China means any harm to India. Quite to the contrary, to us Chinese, India is already the world’s No.1 Superpower, transending the best traditions of the British Empire every day. No dispute here, and much admired. In PPP terms, India is already the world’s No.1 economy, not even the US comes close. India has a super high-tech economy with InfoSys, Wipro, Nano, Slumdog, and much more that the average Chinese never even heard about, in whose unfit minds, they only know about BYD, Hauwei, ZTE, and Lenovo; never mind, how limited horizons. In the democratic guidance of Gandhi, Nehru, Indira, Rajeev, and Singh super human politicians,India shines while the world declines. India has a huge population dividend, and as time advances and the multiplier labours forth the advantage will become much more pronounced, just imagine millions more Singhs all equalled by only the Oxford Sheldonian debate chamber forged speakers. With her close to 1.1 Billion Software Engineers, they are making this profession obselete; literacy is not even worthy of men’s will as these boys and gals can all express themselves in the languages of their laptops. In the next 100 years, India with her super effective democracy will prevail mightily; as we Chinese just pray that India will also have mercy to leave a bit of room for us to earn a modest living in our corner of the planet. India just needs to sleep walk through the next 30 years, or better yet with their superior intellectual powers they can make an galactical contribution to human scientific endeavours like whether the black cats are superior to white cats, or white ones to black ones, or what the hell, maybe even both, whereas us poor Chinese will have to continue to slave under the Sun, rain, and snow just to keep us fed and our kids in school. Oh, I take it back, I may have to skip my meals so my kids can stay for one more lesson. With the current economic crisis, my salary here in Beijing is shrinking by 8% each year, together with the overall economy; oh maybe I am confused with the sign of this figure as you see I am not that educated with numbers. All I know is that all that necessity is becoming harder day-by-day, yet these crazy people, like my wife, are clamouring for those fake Gucci bags. In 30 years, I suspect my salary would march on to zero, with how many … I really do not know now, but then I would also be dead and need not to care. Oh, by the way whatever you hear from our government and the foreign press, if it is good news, just ignore it, it is not quite right, shall we just say. Cheers to India! Cheers to India!

Posted by Huyu | Report as abusive

china knows full well india won’t dare fight a conventio-nal war with it to get it to vacate indian territory.And (conventional) war is the only means to get it to vacate. That means unless indian nukes strike first, there is NO WAY to get china to vacate indian territoriestill atleast it has had opportunity to take out mineralsoil etc if any exist there. It’s NOT a stalement; it’s ano win situation for india. The best way to weaken chinais to stop trade/investment else china is going to milktrillions from indian mktplace only to make it strong tobe stubborn to vacate indian land; just to keep thesetrade $s china is dragging its feet instead of saying”No I wont vacate; you dare fight us with conventionalbombers, we shall grab MORE of your territory”Only war can annex/deannex land; such annexation etc islegal till you lose it in next war or whatever

Posted by jjmk4546 | Report as abusive

@ Chirkut… 1962 war was lost due to the congress party’s grand visionary JL Nehru and not merely due to poorly equipped Indian Soilders.What jjmk is saying is right. If India bolsters defence, China will not sit and watch. It will do something. Today also, it controls movement of Indians in Arunanchal Pradesh. If China attacks, waitress of Italy and her family will flee to Rome… Most of Congressi will also go abroad with her.Look at it this way… In 1962 war India was saved by mercy of US who was then powerful than China. India had first begged US to stop Pakistan from opening up front on west as it fought on East with China. US did so. But under great vision of Nehru we could not even fight China and again begged US to stop China. US ultimately asked China to halt advances and we got saved.This time something happens US won’t be able to stop China as China is not the same China of 1962. It has might, muscle, power to control. US begs China support to deal with N Korea. Look at India it is nowhere when compared with China… India still begs. What have Indians done since 1962… Voted for Congress the result1) Pakistan continues to bleed India and is now a nuclear armed country2) We have other great neighbors like Bangalis who are mohhamedeans and will stoop to any level3) Entire demography of North East India has changed and Christians are 100% who will use any war with China as opportunity to kill and fight against Indians4) Antony has stalled modernization of defense forces on whims and fancies which are more in the nature “Why Bribe/ Tip was Not Paid to Me/ Waitress”ConclusionIf China opens up border and Pakistan joins in (More likely this time than in 1962 as US is weak) then be prepared for another onslaught of rape, murder, lot and pillage of HindusLastly do shout Jai Ho!

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Be it China or any other country, India has to build an army which can not only prove deterrent but also give back befitting reply to any misadventures. We Indians are over the “Hindi Chini Bhai Bhai” c_r_a_p and understand the need for a great economy and an even greater military. India should not only build up its strength on the Eastern border but also strengthen it’s navy as China has been increasing it’s naval presence aggressively in the recent past.

Posted by Aaruni Upadhyay | Report as abusive

Golden times for the arms industry I guess, this is not what India needs.

For all those India-China war enthusiasts, you may want to know the names of Indian companies that have invested and set-up factories in China over the past decade. For your information, here’s a quick and short list:1. TCS2. Bharat Forgings (world’s second largest automotive forging company)3. Bajaj Auto4. Aptech (IT training)5. Aurobindo Pharma6. Vam Organic Chemicals Ltd.7. Bry Air (Asia) Ltd.8. Infosys etc. etc. and the list goes on…So, so much is at stake for both China and India mutually and recent media reports say that India is in a likely position to replace the US as China’s largest trade partner in the whole world. Already, China is India’s largest trade partner in Asia.India and China have cultural ties dating back to millennia – Buddhism was the state religion in China in the past, so India has conquered the Chinese hearts and minds and that, not with weapons or WMD’s. It’s the imperative of the Indian Army to guard and secure all of India’s borders, India would not venture or let itself be drawn into a conflict on a border issue. The Indian Army’s positioning in Arunachal has to be seen as a requisite responsibility and duty and not as belligerent posturing.In response to people suggesting Arunachal be given to China because of the racial similarity of people, I would like to say that India never belonged to any particular distinct human race. The far-eastern states in India have always been part of India since mythological times going back to ca. 1500BC, and those states have been referred to as “Seven Sisters” in ancient Indian epics. So, what makes a man or woman an Indian? It’s not your racial similarity to a particular group, as identified and understood in the Western countries, but it’s your language, cultural affiliations, shared history, customs, familial ties and such like that make an Indian an Indian. And this is true for much of Asia. So, the people in Arunachal might ‘look’ similar to the Chinese, but Arunachal has been and will be an integral part of India because it has always been part of the larger sub-continent sharing the same history and cultural past.And by the way, India did not annex Sikkim but the state of Sikkim merged with the Indian Union after a referendum in 1975.Thank you,Ajay.

Posted by Ajay | Report as abusive

The article severely lacks in conveying anything to readers about 1962 war and the readers are debating.Debate on basis of what? On basis of some ornamental words like “painful memory” used by the writer?One can safely conclude that the comments of usual readers of this blog mauryan, chirkut etc are baseless and they would not be knowing history of 1962 war.Writer obviously is biased, prejudiced and has severe disinclination to remove his lack of information and knowledge on 1962 war of India and China.The readers are also responding on the emotions that have been stoked by article.For everyone’s information, please read through 1962 war history. One will get information from CIA documents, Chinese Documents and independent writers like Neville Maxwell. Indian version of 1962 war is as twisted as glorious Mughal Rule Era taught in school. The official report on enquiry of 1962 war has not yet been released by Government in name of security, sensitivity.

Posted by rohit | Report as abusive

Great Post by Huyu… The best one… Thought provoking and thoroughly enjoyable. The humor in his language makes be believe he is Indian.

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Rohit:I do not know what exactly you want to say other than that you have better understanding of the reasons behind India loss in 1962 war. Do you want India to sit scared of China.Well you might be knowing better about 1962 war, but any Indian with superficial knowledge knows India lost heavily due to Nehru’s poor insight.Today, one has to acknowledge that there is military imbalance on either side of the perceptive border-NE India is under-militarized and India is busy tackling insurgents in there, while China is building up steadily on their side. I do not know why there is such a problem as paying attention to Indian military needs. Or is it just beause of anti-congress party views clouding the judgement.Guys, India-China problems might be bigger than India-Pakistan, but the chances of India-China war is low. There is no better buffer than growing economies and today China is the official largest trade partner of India, even ahead of USA with India importing more than they export with double digit billion $ trade deficit. Budhism, culture, history etc are not enough to prevent wars, but economy is. Pakistan will shut up if they have such reasons, but they don’t. Without going off the topic, my bigger worry is substandard Chinese products in Indian market.@If China opens up border and Pakistan joins in (More likely this time than in 1962 as US is weak) then be prepared for another onslaught of rape, murder, lot and pillage of Hindus–Come on, Chinese are not dumb. China is not under Chirman Mao and India is not under Nehru and they have stakes in each other unlike in 1962 when it was just empty Hindi-Chini Bhai-Bhai.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

To set the record straight. Hu-Yu, i.e., me, is Chinese, hu-yu, hu-yu.

Posted by Huyu | Report as abusive

@huyuBased on my experience with expatriate Chinese I agree with you that common Chinese do not wish harm to india.(I cann’t say the same for Pakis).Issue is how much common Chinese control govt policies?The great leap forward and Tienanmen square does not paint a good picture.I dont think India’s move in NE is aggressive. It is a defensive move. China also has a lot of presence in Tibet. Strong fences make good neighbors!China’s stance on Arunachal and India’s stand on Aksai chin is more ideological than practical. Possibly they can solve their border dispute by turning LAC to International border. Sikkim is a good example of peaceful resolution for both countries.If both countries would be at ease with each other India will be less cautious of china and China will be able to rely more on India vis-a-vis US. That way China can also do away dealing with basket cases like Myanmar and Pakistan.

Posted by chirkut | Report as abusive

Rajeev,I am not saying that India should sit scared of Chinese. I am not against strengthening of India defense. I said that the article will stoke fire rather than initiate meaningful discussion. I do not claim to have superior knowledge on 1962 war but sensitive things should be stated plainly without adjectives.”Any Indian with superficial knowledge knows India lost heavily due to Nehru’s poor insight” is as far as I believe is not the right summary. India was forced into a loss by JL Nehru may be right.It is right to say that India China war is a remote possibility but India China need to take steps to establish a transparent and trustworthy relationship. This I believe, has been lacking ever since India and China gained independence from colonists, and one of the reasons behind the 1962 incident.I would also like to bring everyone’s attention to [ The much publicized deployment of forces in North East and following event have curious resemblance to some events prior to 1962 ]:Defense Minister Antony has stalled defense forces modernization deals. The reasons (allegations of bribery) given by ministry sound whimsical in nature and cannot be proved. There is no person in place who is to face legal action but deals have been stalled by defense minister. Is there no system in place till date which ensures that defense deals move in a systematic manner? What gives the politicians and bureaucracy a right to step into routine defense matters directly… If there was allegation of bribery then why Defense Minister had to step in… Is there no system in Defense Forces which investigates, concludes and then takes or suggest suitable course of action? Are civilians better equipped to state, define and decide needs of defense forces or they only need to take a pragmatic decision on needs of defense based on inputs from defense?

Posted by rohit | Report as abusive

Rohit:Main point is that Nehru was responsible for 1962 debacle. His geo-political foresight was more idealistic than realistic, he made bad moves, such as denying UN permanent membership and gifting UN permanent membership to the ROC China which went to PRC China in70s, gifting COCO Island to Burma, now used by Chinese, blindly believing 2 nations with disputed borders can be brothers without stregnthening defences. But that was Nehru as a person, not congress party.I will quote Chirkut “Strong fences make good neighbors!”. So India moving some troops is perfectly normal if it helps India’s needs. Saying “If China attacks, waitress of Italy and her family will flee to Rome… Most of Congressi will also go abroad with her” is a mere speculation that cannot be proved or disapproved. Sure this tells Sonia Gandhi’s background and your anti-congress stance. Well then who will prevent any other politicians from fleeing the country—whether economist Singh, poet Atal or extremists like Advani and Modi if given chance.Back on the useful stuff, if India accepted UN permanent membership seat in 1953 (?), would there have been 1962 war? Would it ever get?

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Rajeev,Politics somehow creeps in because of the democratic system of India. For clarification, I am anti Congress but not pro BJP. I do not vote at all.I do not believe Nehru was responsible… Nehru was a democratic dictator who led defeat of India right from front and got away with it… Thanks to media and Congress Party.Even I agree that strong fences result in lasting peace and India should up it’s defense to match the best in world. But there is no need to create media hype about it.Coming down to creating strong fences etc., the contribution of indigenous companies in developing technology and weapons is not much. India has to import arms and ammo but the entire process somehow does not function smoothly and allows politicians and bureaucrats to play big time role in it. Will this help India in creating strong fences?

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

RohitIf not Nehru, someone has to take credit for the deafeat. whatever that is, the PM takes responsibility. It will be hard to defend Nehru. The reason for his depression and death is defeat in 1962 war.India had to defend its borders in later wars against Pakistan also and did OK with the same democratic system and congress party in place.@Indigenous technology…..: I completely agree.How about nehry denying UN Pemanentmembership. If he accepted there would have been no war, most probably plus other advantages in today’s world. he gave imprtance to UN (Kashmir) and kicked the permanent seat.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Rajeev,”India had to defend its borders in later wars against Pakistan also and did OK with the same democratic system and congress party in place.”Before we get into the nitty and gritties, after 1962 debacle, interference of bureaucracy and politicians was reduced in matters of defenses and defense was given some say. We can safely infer that this new gained independence in deciding matters related to defenses by defense experts would have lasted for say 5 to 6 years which also translates into victory for India in Indo Pak wars. Let us for some time, as you say, believe that Congress won the wars.What has been the concrete result of victory in wars with Pakistan? Was India able to reclaim territory which Congress Party makes Indians believe is part of India back from Pakistan? Did the war in any way refrain Pakistan from using alternate means of waging war with India? Did Kashmir issue got resolved even with 1971 war? Have the Hindus of Kashmir got their rights? Does the world believe that Kashmir is part of India? Has India got back the loan that it gave to Pakistan in late 1940′s?

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Rohit:@We can safely infer that this new gained independence in deciding matters related to defenses by defense experts would have lasted for say 5 to 6 years which also translates into victory for India in Indo Pak wars.”-Assuming that, do you mean India will lose the war against Pakistan, at this moment?@What has been the concrete result of victory in wars with Pakistan?That’s a different issue. Even solid Chinese win could not solve the border dispute–Tawang-Arunachal Pardesh. Yes they have Indian territory but could they claim all they wanted.@Was India able to reclaim territory which Congress Party makes Indians believe is part of India back from Pakistan? Did Kashmir issue got resolved even with 1971 war?–First off all, those wars were defensive in nature not offensive. 1965–pakistan attacks India to win Kashmir territory. In 1971, refugees problems into India issue was the reason to take care of E. Pak problem. So your questions should be asked to Pakistan who did the first atack —in 1965 as well as in 1971 (1971 formal attack by pakistan if you know ???Dec 71). India has been generous (or stupid) in not pushing its way into Lahore (1965; but then that was also not India’s goal). Indira Gandhi converted ceasefire line resulting from 1971 war into LoC in J&K, but allowed Bhutto to get away with verbal acceptance that LoC will be later converted to de facto border.@Have the Hindus of Kashmir got their rights? Does the world believe that Kashmir is part of India?–Wars will worsen the cause and solve. In reality, India asking for kashmir in Pak and Pak looking for a piece of it in India is impractical. Well, some politicians in the world (US and UK; and of course Pak) thought Sikhs need independence and allowed the pro-Khalistan activities. Does India have to please them to prove her right? To hell with them(at that time). But yes K-issue needs solution.@Has India got back the loan that it gave to Pakistan in late 1940’s?–Enlighten me since I do not know.Also, what do you think will happen 5-100 yrs down the line? In addition to any pessimism…

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

RohitCorrection:”Wars will worsen the cause, not solve the problems.”"Also, what do you think will happen 5-100 yrs down the line to K-issue? In addition to any pessimism…”

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

Rohit and RajeevGuys nice discussion, sorry to jump in. Few points here:Both 1965 and 71 wars cannot be termed as defensive on part of India. In both wars India tried to inflict maximum blow to Pakistan and vice versa.Regarding the question if India will loose a war with Pakistan at this stage? well, in my opinion its not a question of India loosing the war, its that India will not be able to win the war. if the opposite word for victory in english is defeat than so be it. India will be defeated, to rephrase it.For decades after Pakistan’s creation Indian leaders, the likes of Nehru’s who suffered heart attacks due to loosing wars to China, those very Indian netas never accepted Pakistan even reluctantly. That has been the root cause of the problem. The Kashmir insurgency is just yesterday’s event. What about the Mukti Bahni insurgents entered in East Pakistan?Rohit has a valid point, Indian system is flawed and lacks transparency. But atleast there is a permanent emocratic system, if not perfect. It is something Pakistan can learn from.

Posted by Umair | Report as abusive

Rajeev,1) Assuming that, do you mean India will lose the war against Pakistan, at this moment?No one can predict future. People look forward with optimism.2) Even solid Chinese win could not solve the border dispute–Tawang-Arunachal Pardesh. Yes they have Indian territory but could they claim all they wanted.That’s skipping the answer. The right answer is NO.3) “wars were defensive in nature not offensive”Correct answer should be a thorough analysis is needed to be done as to why war victories were fruitless and not oriented towards solving problems. My answer is solution could have not been forced till US + Russia would have put it’s weight behind India. This may also solve dilemma why China pulled back.4) Wars will worsen the cause and solve. In reality, India asking for kashmir in Pak and Pak looking for a piece of it in India is impractical. Well, some politicians in the world (US and UK; and of course Pak) thought Sikhs need independence and allowed the pro-Khalistan activities. Does India have to please them to prove her right? To hell with them(at that time). But yes K-issue needs solution.K Issue cannot be solved by any means other than war till current position of India and Pakistan are not diluted.5) Enlighten me since I do not know.Please go through parliamentary papers http://parliamentofindia.nic.in/lsdeb/ls 10/ses3/1809039203.htm“When India and Pakistan had because two independent nations India had given about Rs. 300 crores to Pakistan, But India has so far, taken no measures to recover that money from Pakistan.”6) Wars will worsen the cause, not solve the problems. Also, what do you think will happen 5-100 yrs down the line? In addition to any pessimism…Future, I told you, can’t be predicted… But it can be inferred from events in past. Terrorism will continue. The unabated rise of terrorism may force world to think for radical solutions.

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Rajeev,One more referencehttp://indiabudget.nic.in/es200 6-07/chapt2007/chap25.pdfPage number 34 TABLE 2.6Amount due from Pakistan on account of share of pre-partition debt Rs 300 Crore.

Posted by rohit | Report as abusive

Rohit:Thanks for the links. Nothing much to comment on the rest.Umair:@Both 1965 and 71 wars cannot be termed as defensive on part of India. In both wars India tried to inflict maximum blow to Pakistan and vice versa.—Elaborate on why not? Your own country’s ex Air Marshal Asghar Khan says that Pakistan initiated hostilities against India each time.http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect  /dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspape r/columnists/16-ardeshir-cowasjee-wise-w ords-from-an-old-warrior-hs-04He says “Until recently when the so-called Taliban became a problem, our defence expenditure was meant only to meet a threat from India. The fact is that in the last 60 years of our existence, India has not started hostilities against Pakistan unless provoked to do so, or until we created conditions, as we did in 1971 in East Pakistan, for India to interfere militarily….”@Regarding the question if India will loose a war with Pakistan at this stage? well, in my opinion its not a question of India loosing the war, its that India will not be able to win the war. if the opposite word for victory in english is defeat than so be it. India will be defeated, to rephrase it.-Umair, you can play with the words and become a victor on the net.@The Kashmir insurgency is just yesterday’s event. What about the Mukti Bahni insurgents entered in East Pakistan?-What about the raiders of 1948 to occupy Kashmir. It started from there in reality. Screwed the whole thing.

Posted by rajeev | Report as abusive

China acts like a cat, “while drinking milk, Cat thinks that nobody could see the cat since the cat is deep down into the container. China tried to isolate India from every angle. They have no interest in Pakistan other than to keep India on the bay using Pakistan’s soil, resources. Similarly they have tried to do the same using Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar. The total GDP, purchasing power and per capita income of Pakistan is so low that in never came to the radar of the investors to invest in that country. The FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) in Pakistan is negligible in compare to India and China. Still China pours billions in to Pakistan. The competition for future super power is getting fierce between china and India. A war between China and India will be a lose lose situation for both India and China. As India cannot afford to have a war with Pakistan due to Nuclear, so does China. India can also wipe Sanghai and Beging from the map. Historically Communist talks tough. Though India needs to look at its approach to deal with her neighbor, it’s time for Pakistan to wake up to the ground reality.

Posted by Saurav Mohanty | Report as abusive

Saurav Mohanty,China may be moving for global supremacy and given the fact that US is on decline, China has brilliant chance of becoming a superpower.But what makes you believe that India is becoming or on way to become superpower? India has a growing population which cannot be contained and therefore, poverty, corruption, ineffective judiciary etc cannot be removed. This population is not in a state to face even one season of calamity. The natural resources of India are not enough to sustain 1 billion people.

Posted by Rohit | Report as abusive

Failed State Index Rankings:1. SOMALIA2. ZIMBABWE3. SUDAN4. CHAD5. CONGO6. IRAQ7. AFGHANISTAN10. PAKISTAN13. BURMA17. N KOREA19. BANGLADESH22. SRI LANKA25. NEPAL57. CHINA87. INDIAAll friends of China are topping the list. Aspiring failed state can use this as a reference. Copy this link quickly before china blocks this blog or links!http://www.foreignpolicy.com/artic les/2009/06/22/the_2009_failed_states_in dex

Posted by tony | Report as abusive

In fact,in the Chinese eyes,Pakistan is the brother contry because of the help from them in the Great Earthquake.

Posted by Reminding M.J | Report as abusive

Indians are too obsessed with Pakistan to worry about China, that is why the bulk of the Indian military is deployed against Pakistan.