India-China border issue is just a Chinese diplomatic game

India-China border issue is just a Chinese diplomatic game

China and India have been entangled with each other since 1841 over a beautiful wasteland in northern India, also known as Aksai Chin, the land over which both the nations lay their claim upon.


India-China border issue is just a Chinese diplomatic game

China and India have been entangled with each other since 1841 over a beautiful wasteland in northern India, also known as Aksai Chin, the land over which both the nations lay their claim upon.

After more than 170 years of signing innumerable treaties to solve the border issue between Indian princely states and China, and demarcating and revising of the border lines several times by  the British India, we are still struggling with the same question – Which area belongs to whom?

When British (who seems to have loved making, deleting and remaking lines on the map) left India, they left everybody involved so confused with Johnson Line, McCartney-Mc Donald Line and McMahon Line, that India and China started claiming their area as per their own theories and convenience using one of the three lines or without using any line at all. (Try reading ‘Sino-Indian border issues’ on Wikipedia to know what confusion I am talking about)

Because of this confusion, no actual line has ever been drawn between independent India and stable Chinese national government. The region is still left unmarked with a huge no-man’s-land.

India-China border has not seen any lethal aggression for past many decades, though both the countries have alleged cases of intrusion against each other, which were always solved with mutual understanding.

But the current stalemate, which still exists after 3 flag meetings, is taking more time than usual.

Why is China suddenly acting so stubborn?

It’s not sudden. India, even after several warnings by China, did not budge last year from exploring oil with Vietnamese government in the South China Sea, a complexly disputed area which is claimed by China, Vietnam, Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia etc. Indian action might have instigated China to use Aksai Chin to put pressure on the Indian Government to change its stand about South China Sea in favor of China.

(The seriousness of the issue of South China Sea can be understood from the fact that it is the main issue dominating the ongoing ASEAN summit in Brunei)

Could it be a sign of sudden war? No. Considering the $66.4 billion of mutual trade, which according to Business Standard could reach $100 billion by 2015, both the nations would not want to risk their economy by engaging in war.

What is the solution of the current problem?

Indian government is trying to solve it the peaceful way, holding the talks with their Chinese counterparts, etcetera. This might work again as it always has, but it would not guarantee that intrusions would not happen again.

Some news channels say that Army has suggested display of power from the Indian side. This might improve or worsen the current situation, but would not solve it for sure.

What is the solution to the whole problem?

Let’s consider the options.

Some say, ‘Unless the proper demarcation of border is done, the issue won’t resolve’. Think about it. Let’s consider a total of 50 km land (in width) is in question. Both the nations consider this area as their own. Could one country give up its whole area? Could both of them decide on marking the border midway (which would mean compromising 25km of the area that each consider its own; nationalists of respective countries would kill their politicians if such action is even thought of)?

Another option, aggressive procurement by one side, that means War. Would that solve it? Would the losing country never try to gain its hurt ego and land back?(remember, India is in much better condition than it was in 1962) and anyways, war between nuclear powers and 2 of the world’s three biggest armies India and China, with both countries capable of swiping out world’s most populated cities with ICBM’s, could take shape of the worst war ever, leaving the two nations in a grossly dilapidated state.

What about taking the matter to International Court!

That’s the worst option any Indian could think of after knowing the results of taking India-Pakistan-Kashmir’s case to that good-for-nothing court.

Any way out?

There is no feasible long term solution. Why would China resolve the issue, which it can use to pressurize India whenever required? It’s a simple game. They can just install a couple of tents in Aksai Chin and pressurize India on any foreign diplomatic issue. In my opinion, China would like India to loosen its ‘Freedom of Navigation in South China Sea’ stand in exchange of removal of Chinese Army from Indian region.

India might look for support of South-Asian nations, Japan and other nations who consider China as a threat, but any strain in relations with China would not be very healthy. From India’s point of view, maintaining the status quo. Talks, discussion is the only way out for the short term. For the long term, let’s see how the scene unfolds.

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