In diplomacy doors for dialogue are never shut but China intentionally raised a ticklish issue by releasing a controversial map thereby showing Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai plateau as being within China’s territory. Both nations were entailed in a petty issue of scoring over each other which is evident from another controversy started by Dragon that Xi and Modi met on the sideline of BRICS summit in Johannesburg at the request of India which gave birth to the pessimism of improvement in strained ties between two countries. The reports in foreign media as well as Indian press focused on the crux of the brief interaction which took place between Xi and Modi thereby slightly brightening the chances of intensifying efforts to de-escalate tensions at the border which is mandatory to normalize the relations strained since past more than three years. But it proved to be short-lived.
In this backdrop and latent attempt by China to take away credit of success of G20 summit from India, experts opine that Chinese president ,Xi Jinping will not willfully attend G 2o meet in Delhi on Sept 9 which is primarily aimed at undermining the success of summit besides hitting and snubbing United states and west though Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin has stood by India because he telephoned prime minister, Narender Modi to explain his decision not to attend G20 meet in person . Second, China does not want to cede space for India in the global arena.
Future Strategy: India Wants To Give A Big Message To The World
As president of G20 nations, India will be hosting meetings of heads of member nations on Sept 9 and Sept 10,2023 in New Delhi hence Xi’s presence would have made a lot of difference but uncertainty prevails. Experts say that a brief conversation between two leaders had created a good atmosphere which was sullied by China as scoring over each other will not yield positive result. India faces a challenge to ensure the success of the G20 summit which will be attended by Joe Biden, US president also. India needs to avoid any attempt by China to undermine the importance of the G20 meeting hence a signal has been sent to the world about India’s eagerness to have normal ties with Dragon.
China Is Piqued Over Indo-US Ties
Experts believe that China’s attempt to emerge as a dominating power in the region has been thwarted by India which is also an emerging world economic power .China has tried to entrap poor nations in Asia through Debt policy which is a byproduct of its expansion strategy .But such policy is being resented by several nations as they are unable to repay huge loans. Nineteen rounds of talks held between India and China have not yielded tangible result as China has refused to restore pre 2020 status on LOC which reflects its lack of sincerity to resolve the border issue. The Chinese ministry of external affairs had issued a statement which said “President Xi stressed that improving China-India relations serves the common interests of the two countries and peoples,” it added. “The two sides should bear in mind the overall interests of their bilateral relations and properly handle the border issue so as to jointly safeguard peace and tranquility in the border region.” But China’s track record shows that it seldom follows such a policy which is evident from its attempt to grab Indian territory and refusal to pull back its forces which were illegally piling up their strength on our side of LOC.
Secondly, China is very upset over the strategic partnership and close ties which have been developed between the United States and India thereby preventing Dragon from advancing towards it over ambition of becoming the Superpower to replace the US. China keeps on encouraging Pakistan to create tension with India which suits its’ evil designs. Owing to open support to Russia, China stands to lose in the international arena after the Ukraine war. India has maintained good ties with Putin and taken a neutral stand about Ukraine aggression which helped India to get cheap oil amidst the sanctions imposed by the US and west. India’s role in different groupings including the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD), a grouping of Japan, the US, India and Australia is widely seen by China as an America’s initiative to counter the growing influence in the world arena.
Third, Amidst the pushback being faced by China and Russia owing to sanctions imposed by United States ,an aggressive postures was adopted by both nations to ensure expansion of BRICS but India registered its strength as it had taken lead in floating an idea of evolving the consensus over the admission of new six members in the block to develop new global developmental order of governance which should not be Unipolar. It was not to the liking of China as Russia took a stand which was not at variance of India in BRIC.
Border Tension And Rivalry Main Reasons For Skipping Of Summit
Experts say that XI would like to snub American president, Joe Biden and Indian PM, Modi as both are sailing in the same block having close ties. Biden is poised to raise the Ukraine issue and China has stood by Russia. China does not want to tolerate dominance of western power and relations have further strained with India after redrawing of the map. Russia’s president had avoided attending the BRIC meeting in South Africa following the arrest warrant issued by the international court of justice in regards to war crimes committed during the Ukraine war. Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrow will attend the G20 meet and is expected to act in tandem with the Chinese representative on the Ukraine issue. China had hosted G20 meet in 2016 in Hangzhou city in eastern Zhejiang province whereas the first summit took place in Washington in 2008.
Redrawing Of Map Is Another Attempt To Divert Attention
The Chinese president’s move to keep away reflects his diehard attitude to undermine international relevance and importance of the summit which has preceded redrawing a controversial map showing Arunachal Pradesh and Aksai plateau as being within China’s territory. India has rejected the claim of China about Indian territory but it shows its mischief as timing of controversy has been selected with a planned motive of diverting attention from the G20 summit .China has been engaged in over nineteen rounds of talks with army officials of India but it has refused to budge from its current position at LOC whereas India is insisting to restore Pre 2020 status. China had released a map renaming 11 places in Arunachal Pradesh as parts of ‘Zangnan’ or southern Tibet in Chinese territory.
Amidst the optimism of new initiative, Chinese have started a futile debate of giving an impression that India was keen to have face to face interaction between two leaders hence it requested for meeting at the sideline of summit .Indian officials have refuted Chinese claim and clarified that informal interaction happened at the request of China on August 23. Indian sources said that there was a pending request of Chinese officials for a bilateral meeting. Xi and Modi had met for a brief spell and their talks veered around the issue of dire need of des-escalation at the border which was agreed by both leaders. Modi had emphasized the need of stabilizing the peace and tranquility on the border besides respecting each other. China also admitted that two leaders had a candid and in-depth exchange of views on current China-India relations among other interests.
Analysts feel that China cannot fulfil its ambition to expand its influence in the world especially when it carries the baggage of an ‘aggressor’ which will be unacceptable in 21st century. World opinion will always be against a country like China which tries to grab another nation’s territory and attacks the sovereignty of other nations.
(Writer is political analyst and senior journalist based in Shimla)