India’s response to China needs reformulation of long term policies

Since the confrontation between India and China in the Galwan Valley took place on 15-16 June, there have been calls for retaliation against China. Interestingly these calls for retaliation explain India’s relations with China and the extent of deep engagements between India and China.

The concept of raising the costs is often used in Indian defence discourse. This concept is used in reference to Pakistan and mostly in a limited context. It means that India should inflict incremental damage on Pakistan every time when the latter attacks India either overtly or covertly. Similarly, if this concept has to be applied to China it would have to be across different areas – diplomatic, strategic and economic.

Diplomatic steps

India, in its quest for multilateralism, has been careful either not to name China or project itself as countering interests of China. India has maintained, especially with reference to Indo-Pacific, that interests of all the powers must be protected. However, India needs to rethink on its strategy. China cannot be countered by a disconnected approach. It implies India’s accommodative approach against China’s aggression is a mismatch. India needs to be more vocal about China’s actions that harm India not just at the border but also at regional and international level.

China always acts with clarity of opposing India at various international forums. China has blocked India’s entry into the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG).

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