Empowered India, Not Allies, Can Check China: India’s Ex US Envoy
VIDEO: Watch The Quint’s FB live chat on India-China clash with a former Army Commander & a former ambassador to US.
Escalated tensions between India and China along the Line of Actual Control are reminiscent of 1962, when the two countries went to war. After the killing of 20 Indian soldiers, India has a momentous task ahead: managing domestic expectations and strategising a response to China.
The Quint’s Opinions Editor, Nishtha Gautam, talks to ‘power siblings’ Lt Gen (retd) AK Singh and Mrs Meera Shankar. While Lt Gen Singh served as Lieutenant Governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands and Puducherry after he retired from the military as Army Commander, Mrs Shankar has served as India’s ambassador to the United States of America and Germany.
While Singh focuses on not putting undue pressure on the current military, diplomatic and political leadership, Shankar suggests that India should aim to have a secure economic and security environment without dependence on allies and partners. She also argues for achieving parity with China in trade terms.
Shankar also expresses her doubt regarding the efficacy of a highest-level dialogue between PM Modi and China’s Xi Jinping at the moment. She, however, adds that such issues are tackled behind closed doors, as happened in the case of Doklam standoff in 2017. “I’m sure that our embassy in Beijing is handling the situation in an efficient manner.”
In response to a question, Singh shares that public sentiments play a crucial role in democracies but the leadership should not lose focus and exercise the best available option at the time of their choosing.
Both Shankar and Singh highlight the need for India to be relentless in building economic, defence, cyber and space capabilities.
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