Our Fellow for National Security Studies, Sameer Patil, was mentioned and quoted in a write-up on his most recent article on China’s increasing influence in Ladakh. Read the full article here.
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Border regions and communities, some of them far from the heartland, constitute India’s first line of defence, a critical link in its national security. India’s 15,000-km borders touch seven neighbouring countries: Afghanistan (abutting Gilgit), Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, China, Bangladesh, Myanmar. Border regions have their own local dynamics, often shaped by subnational and religious identities that do not necessarily align neatly with political borders. Some also serve as flourishing corridors for illegal smuggling of goods and humans. Technology plays an important role in better protecting borders, but in some cases it has made borders obsolete. Despite their importance, border regions do not receive the full attention of the Indian mainstream, except when border tensions arise.
With India distracted in the Kashmir Valley, the critical border region of Ladakh has become a target of Chinese attention. Beijing appears to be exploiting Buddhist sectarian rivalries as it did in Tibet
The $20 million price tag is a low-cost campaign fee for a country that’s transforming its branding from being “a little red dot” on the shopping map, to becoming a precisely and globally positioned summit state that counts
The June 12 summit was characterised by give-and-take as opposed to the one-way approach practised by earlier U.S. administrations. All countries welcomed the agreement and there is hope that this realism will enable the United States to address other contentious issues too
Prime Minister Modi’s visits to South East Asia last week were major steps in furthering the goals of India’s Act East Policy even as major power rivalries unfolded in the region. Most significant was the visit to Indonesia, a low key Asian power but one that India can partner to enhance its regional stature.
The high cost and political impact of Chinese-funded infrastructure in countries like Myanmar, Malaysia and Sri Lanka make it imperative for India to work with Japan to provide alternatives, to ensure that the region is neither bankrupted nor militarised by Chinese influence.
Pakistan is about to launch two military satellites in June with aid from China. It is pursuing its renewed space programme, using the same clandestine tactics it used for developing its atomic programme
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