Checkmating China’s chicanery

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Checkmating China’s chicanery

Tuesday, 02 April 2024 | Atul Sehgal

Checkmating China’s chicanery

China’s relentless pursuit of dominance in the Asia-Pacific region has led to unease. It is time to call China’s bluff and give a befitting reply

China is at it continuously. Devising devious designs to disturb and destabilise its neighbouring countries to whet its hegemonic appetite, it has created an atmosphere of unprecedented tension in the Asia Pacific region. In specific countries, picking on individuals and community persons who have Communist mindset and funding, arming and training them to further its hegemonic agenda, it has gravely vitiated the political atmosphere of the Asian subcontinent. The instruments of its nefarious actions extend from veiled cultural and economic intrusion to brazen intimidation through military exercises and gestures. Yes, it has learnt expansionism from none other than the erstwhile hegemonic global powers who have ruled the roost in the twentieth century.

Nations are built on ideologies and sustain on the ideological threads that are drawn from the universalistic divine principles called Dharma. But disbelievers in the divine have always existed in this world. Their original breed was called Naastik (atheists) whose ideological icon was an ancient Indian philosopher called Charavak and members of its modern breed are the Communists. Since they do not believe in any supernatural controlling and regulating power called God and also reject the theory of karmic retribution, they display naked self righteousness. They show no qualms of conscience. Since their numbers have steadily grown in the last few decades, they have become arrogant and supercilious. The ruling Chinese Communist Party, its cohorts and subscribers are an illustrative example of above.

China, under its communist regime, annexed Tibet in 1951 and followed it up in 1962 by usurping 38000 square kilometres of Indian territory in Ladakh. In recent months, persons have circulated on social media channels like Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram the original map of China showing in distinctive colours the grabbed territories- China occupied Tibet, East Turkistan, South Mongolia, Manchuria and Yunnan. And China doesn’t stop at it.

It is continuously provoking India either through military build-up across the LAC, intrusion and attempts for encroachment of Indian territory using salami slicing tactics, negative and malicious propaganda against India through its mouthpiece Global Times or by enticing smaller nations in the Indo-China region in its debt trap, installing Communist party regimes in some of these smaller states, establishing military bases in neighbouring smaller states through debt trap diplomacy, cultural infiltration in states as far flung as USA and developing a starkly hegemonic global land route infrastructure for trade called the Belt and Road Initiative – BRI. The recent political manipulations by China in Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka glaringly reveal this.

But Bharat, through astute political and diplomatic counter plays has been successfully checkmating all the sinister moves by China. However, Bharat needs to do much more and with greater prudence and precision, using planning and proactive approach to beat China at its game. The Chinese are following the ideological principles of Sun Tzu which are full of guile, deceit and chicanery. But Barat’s ancient strategy Chanakya Niti is ideologically far superior and powerful, based as it is on the divine principles of eternal Dharma. And, it is heartening to note that the present political dispensation in Bharat is using Chanakya Niti to a good extent to counter the predatory actions of China.

Bharat has a much bigger and broader task to do in keeping with its ancient historical role as the spiritual torchbearer of the world. It has to first retrieve its territory occupied by China-eastern Ladakh or Aksai Chin and then go on to liberate Tibet. Its long term natural objective should be reintegration of Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and even Pakistan and Afghanistan with it. The following action plan is suggested for achieving its geo political objectives in the Asia Pacific region.

1.            Creation of strong national and international media channels for propagation of the facts about pristine cultural and geopolitical glory of Bharat and exposing the propaganda of the colonial and new colonial west about Bharat’s past. This and much more needs to be done to propagate the divine, universalistic Vedic culture of Bharat so that our peace and progress promoting ideology can enter the mental space of global citizens.

2.            Countering China by following the axioms of Chanakya Niti and Artha Shastra-the ultimate tools of statecraft for progress, prosperity and political empowerment of nations. This means China will be dealt with in a planned, proactive, secretive and deceptive manner befitting it. The strategy will not just be paying it back in the same coin, but surprising and shocking it at every step and thoroughly outwitting it. As long as our approach is anchored to eternal principles of Dharma, we will always be victorious.

3.            Bharat needs to spend much more on its defence than at present. Bharat with its current defence outlay of 75 million USD is far behind China with outlay of 222 billion USD. The outlay needs to be doubled by reducing the expenditure on socialistic schemes and doles. R&D in defence needs to be given a further boost by reviving the critical MSME sector, though some good work has been done in the past few years by involving private sector in defence and by encouraging startups. The MSME part of the economy has not received adequate attention of the present Government so far. Boosting of MSME sector will need more drastic import curbs and bureaucratic and structural reforms which will accelerate the growth of this sector and generate jobs in a big way.

4.            Military strength and geopolitical clout are based on economic might. And we need to boost economic growth through educational reforms, agricultural reforms, judicial reforms and bureaucratic reforms. We hope Modi 3.0 envisions them and will complete the half or quarter steps taken in these areas in Modi 1.0 and Modi 2.0 terms.

5.            The reintegration of Bharat to form the United Bharat of the distant past will need ironing out of ideological differences between the countries of the Indian subcontinent. This, it is reiterated, is the most important measure. Our Sanatan Vedic ideology has the potential to rationalise and harmonise all other schools of thought because only the former is humanistic and universalistic.

It can reunite the ideologically divided world like nothing else can. We need to make intensive efforts to disseminate our peace promoting philosophy in the current world with raging wars and other peace disrupting processes on. This is the singular most important step that the scholars, sages and politicians of Bharat need to take in the present times.

(The author is a management consultant; views are personal)

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