Thursday, September 17, 2009

IntelliBriefs: Checking Chinese Intrusions: Smart Deployment is the Way

  • tags: no_tag

    • By Divya Kumar Soti
    • Smart military deployments needed

      By creating border incidents China is try to pressurize India at border talks. China is hardening her stance both at the table as well as on the ground. All this is to be viewed in changed strategic background, as discussed above and proper counter-moves should be made. In this context, it is worth recalling India’s policy on the border problem during 1980-87 and aftermath of Sumdorong Chu incident. From1980 onwards, New Delhi adopted a pro-active military policy with respect to border with China, as enshrined in Gen Krishna Rao Plan. As part of implementing this plan, in wake of growing Chinese belligerence, Indian army conducted Operation Chequerboard in 1986 which involved deployment of troops at Hathung La, across the Namka chu from Thag La ridge. Smart deployments in relation to Tibet were also conducted. In addition to this, then Indian Army Chief Gen K.Sundarji conveyed India’s willingness to solve the border issue through talks. Gen Sundarji stated that India recognizes differences in perceptions of actual boundary between the two countries and Indian deployments are intended to give China ‘the benefit of doubt’. As a result of these steps, China became ready to hold talks on border issue by 1988. Interestingly, China was also ready to discuss the maps offered by India which were once subject of continuous rejections by Chinese by calling them manifestations of British imperialist thought or views of travelers.

      Unfortunately our policy is again resorting to bad old ways and days. Indian policy makers are ignoring a quite reasonable possibility of a major border incident being staged by China within a limited theatre to supplement her bullying tactics. It should be central to our policy aims to solve boundary issue through talks but at the same time we should also take into account ground realities and supplement our diplomatic stand by necessary energetic steps on ground.
    • (The writer is a strategic and intelligence affairs analyst and may be reached at