India China standoff: As New Delhi and Beijing continue to engage in a standoff in the Doklam area near the Bhutan tri-junction for the past three weeks, absence of full time Defence Minister has become a crucial factor, wrote Manish Tewari, former minister in the UPA government in Indian Express today. Currently Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is holding the portfolio after Manohar Parrikar resigned to take charge as Goa Chief Minister. Notably, Chinese president Xi Jinping had refused to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit in Hamburg, the report says. It was China which had ruled out a one-on-one meeting. This was a stark contrast from September 2014 when the bonhomie between PM Modi and President Xi on the banks of the Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad hit the headline.
India and China shares 3,488-km-long border from Jammu and Kashmir to Arunachal Pradesh. Yesterday, an analyst at a Chinese think tank had said a third country’s Army could enter Kashmir at Pakistan’s request, using the same logic the Indian Army used to stop the Chinese military from constructing a road in the Doklam area in the Sikkim sector on behalf of Bhutan.
As the diplomatic tension rises between the two countries, PM Modi would have to deal the issue carefully. The equilibrium in the relationship with China needs to be restored through quiet old-world diplomacy, while continuing to work with the US and Russia to build our military capacity and capabilities that have woefully been neglected by the current government, according to Indian Express report.