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Better Understanding



Swaran Singh

Part I


Except for the brief period of confrontation between 19591992 and the diplomatic freeze that followed for next few years the relations between China and India had never been conflictual in nature. But because of the complicated colonial legacies - which were further compounded by the Cold War dynamics and by the border war of 1962 - mutual distrust and threat perceptions have continued to undermine all efforts towards building confidence. One may ask why confidence and security building measures (CSBMs) between India and China are so critical to the evolution of their multifaceted and multilayered rapprochement? The one line answer would be that these CSBMs present a perfect barometer for any crystal gazing into the future of these two Asian giants. However, this answer remains far too simplistic to explain the complexity of Go-Indian ties. And it is in this context of complications that this essay tries to examine and highlight Sino-Indian CSBMs in terms of their being the first significant step forward untying the knots in the bilateral relations and mutual perceptions.

Firstly, to deal with the theoretical elements of Sine-Indian CSBMs, it has been unjustifiably fashionable to view Sino-Indian CSBMs essentially in the framework of western ready-made models. If anything, the CSBMs in the Asian context have far preceded all western models and, therefore, are neither borrowed from nor identical to those leading to the Final Act of the Helsinki process of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) that was concluded in 1975. Beginning from the Joint Defence Council of 1948 that effected the division of assets and armed forces between India and Pakistan to the Sino-Indian Panchsheel Agreement of 1954, and later the Indo-Pak Simla agreement of 1971, various formal and informal agreements had already effected these CSBMs like “non-use”, or the “selective use” of armed force and created various other mechanisms. Therefore these CSBMs had been institutionalised in Asia far earlier.[1] Besides, these were also far more broad based than the Western CSBMs, including those that were later incorporated the Document of the Conference on Disarmament in Europe held in 1986 at Stockholm (Sweden).[2]

Coming to the salient features of what can be described as the Asian CSBMs that distinguish the Sino-Indian CSBMs from most of their comparable Western models, one sees the near absence of a subjective feeling in the Asian context of an imminent threat which is so central to all those Western conceptions of CSBMs.[3] In Asia’s rather lose polycentric situation, nations had never been so clearly divided as are the communist and liberal democratic traditions that characterise the bipolar division of the West. Similarly, the second basic condition of equality of the military strength between the potential parties to the conflict, again seems very much a Eurocentric feature of CSBMs and is generally missing in the Asian situation.[4] China, India and Pakistan can themselves be cited as ideal examples of this asymmetry of power. Nevertheless, CSBMs have continued to evolve amongst these three countries. Thirdly, the inter-state boundaries which form the basic element of European CSBMs are itself a major problem and therefore the very objective towards which most Asian CSBMs seek to provide solutions, Also, Asian CSBMs are generally backed by ever widening network of measures like state sponsored people-to-people contacts which are aimed at expanding mutual trust and understanding between the entire social elite on both sides.

Nor should we regard the Asian CSBMs in general and the Sino-Indian CSBMs in particular as the byproduct of the post-Cold War peace dividend although the global factors, have surely been much more influential in moulding the European CSBMs than those between Asian countries. This is because unlike Europe, (a) the conflicts in Asia were never seen to be vital to the national interests of both the super powers: and, (b) the middle ranking powers like China and India have become increasingly independent from the regimented bipolar world order of the Cold War years. To give two most apt examples, contrary to Cold War trends, India had initiated its CSBMs during the mid-1970s and India’s Foreign Minister, Atal Behari Vajpai, paid his first visit to Beijing at the lime when China was launching its war against Vietnam and the Soviet forces were about to enter Afghanistan yet, despite India’s closeness to Moscow, the new Cold War of the early 1980s did not disturb the smooth evolution of Sine-Indian rapprochement Similarly, following the June 1989 Tiananmen Square incident, while most of world powers had imposed sanctions thus completely isolating China, the relations between China and India not only continued to be smooth but experienced a greater momentum: the period from the second half through 1989 and 1990 saw 10 high-level visits between the two countries that included visits to New Delhi by Vice Premier Wu Xueqian in October 1989 and by Foreign Minister Qian Qichen in March 1990.[5] The credit for this goes to (a) this unique Asian way of trial and error which, therefore, lends some sort of originality of these Sino-Indian CSBMs, and (b) to the political leadership of both the countries who were able to take and stand by such bold initiatives.

If anything, it is their expanding interactions at various levels that has been the greatest single factor behind the evolution of Sino-Indian CSBMs. (see Table 1) Starting from their exchange of Ambassadors in 1976, these expanding official and business interactions can be divided into three major phases. The first phase (1976-1988), was characterised by both China and lndia looking at each other simply gauging the potential for expanding mutual goodwill and trust. Second phase (1988-1996), which witnessed five formal summits interspersed by hectic initiatives and agreements towards evolving and consolidating CSBMs. Then having established this strong network of CSBMs the recent four agreements signed during President Jiang Zemin’s visit to New Delhi in November 1996, Sino-Indian rapprochement has now entered into its third and final phase where the two are expected to take concrete decisions on more difficult issues like the boundary question.

A quick glance through this evolution from freeze to fervour shows how, though no breakthrough has yet been achieved on the crucial boundary question quite a substantial progress has been made considering the complicated and knotty ground realities. The historic f 988 visit to Beijing by Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had worked as a catalyst in facilitating a U-turn in Sino- Indian relations.[6] Especially, considering Indian sensitivities vis-a-vis China, this visit itself was an extremely bold initiative. But more than this, in the Joint Communiqué at the end of this visit India agreed, for the first time, to dropping its earlier policy stance of asking for settlement of the border as a precondition for any improvement in relations in other fields. Secondly, India not only agreed to describe Tibet as an integral part of (not just an autonomous region) of China but also expressed "concern over anti-Chinese activities by some Tibetan elements in India” -a proviso which was criticised by some as a clear sell-out of the Tibetan interests.[7] India’s over-reaction towards Tibetan protesters during the visit by Premier Li Peng in 1991 was another demonstration of India’s resolve in not letting Tibet become a problem in the way of Sino-Indian rapprochement. All this meant that, Rajiv Gandhi’s visit had finally abandoned India’s discredited forwards policy and, at least during the interim, accepted China’s long-standing demand for the maintenance of tranquillity on the line of actual control (LoAC).

There were also some legal hurdles to this visit. The historic November 1962 resolution of Indian Parliament had bound successive Indian leaders from making any move towards improving Sino-Indian ties until they had obtained every inch of India’s sacred land claimed or taken by the Chinese. But this December 1988 visit by Rajiv Gandhi to Beijing became possible because of another major resolution that was passed by the All India Congress Working Committee on November 5, 1988 urging the government to seek a settlement through “peaceful negotiations” based on “mutual interest” and “acceptable to the peoples of both countries” even if it took time.[8] Apart from minor objections, no main national political parties raised any hue and cry against these “concession” by Rajiv Gandhi. This was because (a) the Congress Party, at this time, had an overwhelming majority in Indian Parliament and (b) the earlier major, initiative towards building peace with China had been taken during the Janata Party government in February 1979. Moreover, eight rounds of border talks (initiated during Foreign Minister, Huang Hua’s visit to New Delhi in 1981) had already created some sort of favourable backdrop. (see Table 2).

Apart from these interactions at the political level, Rajiv Gandhi’s visit also opened avenues for direct military interactions. Because of the 1962 war, any interaction between the military personnel or on defence related matters remained a taboo until the early 1990s. The first exchange in this direction was made by the senior serving officials of the National Defence College (New Delhi) and the National Defence University (Beijing) respectively visiting each other in 1990 and 1992.[9]The two have also since been considering undertaking an arrangement for an institutional exchange wherein at least one officer could attend the others training courses. The military-to-military dialogue was taken to a higher level by India’s Defence Minister, Sharad Pawar’s visit to China in July 1992.[10] This opened the way and was followed by Vice Chief of China’s People’s Liberation Army, Lt. General Xu Huizi, visiting India in December 1993 followed by a visit by their Defence Minister, Chi Haotian’s visit to India during September 7-13, 1994. From the Indian side, Chief of Army Staff, General B.C. Joshi and Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral V.S. Shekhawat paid reciprocal visits to various defence facilities in China during July 1994 and March 1996 respectively. This increasing interaction and transparency between the two military establishments has surely contributed to the building up of mutual confidence.

Once again, just like the lack of interactions and other historical legacies had coloured their visions during the earlier years, increasing information and confidence has led to revision and rectification of various policies on both sides. One good example of this spectrum of biases in perceptions can be seen in the way various China watchers interpreted the incident when in May 1992 China detonated a 150 megaton nuclear device just hours after President R. Venkatraman arrived in Beijing. While some called it an act of intimidation, others described it as an expression of China’s solidarity with India in their strategic defiance of Washington. However, with persistent efforts from both sides, a relatively more objective understanding of each other has started to emerge during the 1990s. Observing the tenor of policy pronouncements from both sides there appears to be an obvious shift of emphasis away from the assertion of huge territorial claims or high moral principles increasingly towards “mutual concessions” and "accommodation ”from the Chinese side and on historical, legal, geographical realities from the Indian side with both now calling for a “fair, reasonable, and mutually acceptable” compromise solution to their boundary question.[11]

Also both sides today have far greater mutual understanding on various issues ranging from global problematic like the US nuclear non-proliferation to regional and bilateral contentions like Kashmir, Tibet, and border. As a result, while owing to their ideological systems and methods of operation the two had appeared to be dramatical opposites during the 1950s over the years the two sides have begun to appreciate and emphasise on their similarities and evolved common approach on certain issues like nuclear disarmament, trade and human rights. On the nuclear question, for example, while China has sought to keep its own nuclear build-up completely insulated from the ongoing disarmament debates between Moscow and Washington: yet, Beijing has also generally kept a low profile on India’s nuclear and missile programme and, in fact, assisted India by supplying heavy water at a crucial stage in January 1995.[12] Nevertheless, there still exist differences of approach on various issues and inspite of substaintial improvement, India has continued to be deeply concerned about China’s supplies of nuclear components, materials and knowhow to other countries in India’s neighbourhood. This is especially true of China’s indulgence with Pakistan. Yet, in the end, all this has never discouraged India from making efforts at improving ties with both Beijing and Islamabad.

From the Indian side, these efforts for rapprochement had all started as early as late 1960s. Later, starting from Sardar Swaran Singh’s (then Foreign Minister) offer in August 1970 “to settle all matters...peacefully through bilateral negotiations,” India not only became the first one to take many major initiatives but also became the first one to declare and actually resume its Ambassadorial level diplomatic relations with Beijing.[13] Besides, India also made many other goodwill gestures towards China like installing telex links in each others embassies, supporting China’s candidacy for the Manila-based Asian Development Bank, inviting China to a regional UNESCO conference in New Delhi, and Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi herself making a personal gesture by visiting and signing the book of condolences in the Chinese embassy in New Delhi as mark of respect for the late Premier Zhou Enlai. The first feelers from the Chinese side came in May 1960 and April 1961 from then Vice Premier Deng

Xiaoping who revived Zhou Enlai’s 1960 proposal for a package deal on the boundary question.[14] Here, Deng proposed Chinese recognition of the McMahon Line in the eastern sector in return for Indian acceptance of the status quo along the LoAC in the western sector. In fact, according to Mrs. Gandhi’s foreign policy Advisor, G. Parthasarthy, Mrs. Gandhi had even agreed to accept the Chinese package deal only that, with the Chinese assent, the formal announcement had been postponed until after December 1985 general elections.[15] Soon the assassination of Mrs. Gandhi in October 1984 and later the Sumdorong Chu valley incident in July 1966 completely rocked this spirit of accommodation and delayed major initiatives by f9w more years.[16]

A clear shift in China’s South Asia policy, however, began to occur from late 1960s when Beijing gradually gave up its earlier post-1962 tactics of providing moral and material support to India’s smaller neighbours which was aimed at: (a) tying New Delhi down to the South Asian region and, (b) trying to offset India’s preeminence even in this smaller region. In 1969, for example, China not only refused to supply weapons to Nepal and gave only muted response to India’s peacekeeping in Sri Lanka, it even told General Ershad of Bangladesh to expect no more Chinese support on their river water dispute with New Delhi.[17] This has since resulted in improving India’s relations with both Bangladesh and Nepal. Putting an end to its dilly-dallying of late 1980s, the Rao-Li joint statement of December 1991 clearly told China’s closest ally Pakistan that Beijing now regards Kashmir as a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan. Since then China’s position on Kashmir has also undergone a marked change on at least two basic counts: (a) by describing it as a bilateral issue between India and Pakistan that should be dealt not under UN resolutions of 1954 but the 1972 Simla Agreement, and (b) by broadly agreeing to underline the fear from “Islamic fundamentalism”. In the second case, the Joint Statement did not directly mention either India’s Kashmir or China’s Xinjiang yet, as both these provinces share common borders with Pakistan, the statement has clear implications for Islamabad.[18] But nothing perhaps stands comparison to the first Magna Carta on Sine-Indian CSBMs that came two years later and was a part of the next Rat-Li Joint Statement from Beijing.

By any standards, this nine-point “Agreement on Maintenance of Peace and Tranquillity along the Line of Actual Control (henceforth MPTA), signed between two Prime Ministers Narasimha Rao and Li Peng at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People on September 7, 1993 has been the corner-stone of Sine-Indian CSBMs.[19] Though already in vogue since the Rajiv Gandhi visit to Beijing in 1988, it was this agreement that formally institutionalised the process of Sine-Indian CSBMs.19 Picking up strings from India’s first CSBM agreement of April 1954, the MPTA reiterates its faith in Panchsheel and asserts that these Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence should form the basis of all inter-state relations. But unlike in the earlier Sino-Indian Panchsheel agreement where India unilaterally made major concessions, the MPTA clearly represents equality of two nations and lays out various CSBMs that should further buttress Sino-Indian rapprcchement.[20] This business-like spirit is crystal clear throughout its concise text that details on number of specific points.

Article one of MPTA starts by highlighting the consensus where both sides wish to resolve the boundary question “through peaceful and friendly consultations” and where both undertake to “strictly respect and observe the line of actual control” and never to “use or threaten to use force” and whenever necessary “jointly check and determine the segments” of their border. Article Two makes a far more concrete recommendation asking the two sides to keep their border military presence “to a minimum level compatible with the friendly and goodneighbourly relations” and to further agree “to reduce” them “in conformity with the requirements of the principle of mutual and equal security” Taking off from here, Article Three talks of evolving “effective CBMs” and asks each side not to “undertake specified levels of military exercises in mutually identified zones” and to “give the other notification of military exercises” along the border. Articles Four and Five speak about their agreement to create mechanisms for dealing with intrusions and other exigencies while in Article Six both sides clarify that despite these resolutions nothing in this treaty shall “prejudice their respective positions on the boundary question.” To actually kick off initiatives Article Seven asks both sides to start by specifically defining the “form, method, scale and content of effective verification measures”, and Article Eight initiates this process by asking each side to “appoint diplomats and military experts to formulate, through mutual consultations, implementation measures for the present agreement”, and this setting up of an Expert Group can be easily described as the greatest achievement of this pact in terms of building Sino-Indian CSBMs. Finally, Article Nine gives its date of coming into effect and declares all its versions - Hindi, Chinese, English - as equally valid.

The second CSBMs agreement was signed during President Jiang Zemin’s visit to New Delhi in November 1998. This is a 12 Article document that partly fulfils the agenda of their first CSBM agreement of 1993 and it further seeks to extend the CBMs to more specific and sensitive areas in the military field.[21] Going by its first Article that reads “Neither side shall use its military capability against the other side”, it virtually stands out as a No War Pact and both sides have also projected it in that light. The agreement begins with (Article II) recognising that both have “different perceptions” on certain segments of border for which the two have agreed “to speed up the process of clarification” and under Article X both sides agree 40 exchange maps indicating their respective perceptions... as soon as possible.” It is this businesslike approach to these sensitive questions that gives hope for the future as it depicts !heir growing mutual confidence on the current pace of their rapprochement.

As regards evolving CBMs in the military field, the agreement makes a serious attempt at effecting reductions in their military manpower and equipment deployed in the border areas. There had been major confusion as China does not consider their deployments in Tibet as being open for mutual reductions where India believes that Chinese forces on the Tibetan plateau have clear one-to-ten advantage against Indian forces. Accordingly, Article III provides that keeping with “the principle of mutual and equal security” all future ceilings are expected to be based on “perimeters such as the nature of terrain, road communications and other infrastructure and time taken to induct/deinduct troops and armaments.” Article IV clearly categonses certain type of offensive weapons withdrawal of which will be given priority These include combat tanks, infantry combat vehicles, guns (including howitzers) with 75 mm or bigger calibre, mortars with 120 mm or bigger calibre, surface-to-surface missiles, surface-to- air missiles and to start with the two sides will “exchange data on the military forces and armament” that are to be reduced. It also exhorts the two sides to ‘avoid holding large scale military exercises involving more than one Division (15,000 troops) in close proximity to the LoAc” and to inform the other side on “type, level, planned duration and areas of exercise” in case it involves more than a Brigade (5,000 troops) and about deinduction “within five days of completion.” The other side is free to seek any number of clarifications as it deems necessary.

Taking a major step forward, the two agree that no combat aircraft which “include fighter, bomber, reconnaissance, military trainer, armed helicopter and other armed aircraft” shall be allowed to fly “within ten kilometers” of the LoAC “except by prior permission” from the other side (Article V). Similarly, Article VI prohibits any use of “hazardous chemicals, conduct blast operations or hunt with guns or explosives within two kilometers” of the LoAC unless it is “part of developmental activities” in which case the other side shall be informed “through diplomatic channels or by convening a border personnel meeting, preferably five days in advance.” Then to “strengthen exchanges and cooperation between their military personnel and establishments” Article VII provides that the two sides shall (a) increase “meetings between their border representatives at designated places, (b) expand “telecommunication links” between these border points, and (c) establish “step-by-step medium and high-level contacts between the border authorities” of the two sides. Should any land or air intrusions take place “because of unavoidable circumstances like natural disasters” the other side is expected under Article VIII to “extend all possible assistance to them” and the two shall exchange information and have consultations to work out “modalities of return of the concerned personnel.” And finally, as won as the Sino-Indian Joint Working Group on Boundary Question starts “mutual consultations” (Article Xl) for “detailed implementation measures”, each side shall have (Article IX) “the right to seek clarification” regarding the “manner in which the other side is observing the agreement” or on any “doubtful situation” in the border region. Finally, under Article XII though all Hindi, Chinese and English versions are “equally authentic”, but “in case of divergence, the English text shall prevail.” This agreement has since been ratified by both sides and instrument of ratification were exchanged at the JWG’s tenth meeting in New Delhi in August 1997.

These two agreements apart from being a major take-off point for many fresh initiatives, have also provided a major boost to existing “mechanisms” for their border related CSBMs. The Joint Working Group on Boundary Question has been one most effective and generic forum for implementing Sino-Indian CSBMs. (see Table 3) To begin with, the JWG has institutionalised regular meetings of military commanders from both sides at the following four points: Bumla and Dichu in the eastern sector, Lipulekh near Pithoragarh (U.P.) in the middle sector and Spanggur near Chushul in the western sector. These meetings are organised and conducted by these area commanders from the two sides to establish facts on the ground and can also be held more than once in case of any exigencies. Besides, commanders on both sides are now provided with “hotline” links to ensure consultations in case of any intrusions or other emergencies. Advance notices of proposed military manoeuvres on one side is provided to the other and mechanisms for handling possible intrusions on either side are put in place. The high point of these JWG meetings occurred during its eighth meeting during August 1995 at New Delhi where the two sides agreed to actually dismantle four border posts in the Wangdong tract where troops had been deployed at an alarming proximity to each other. Apart from their land-based troops, the two air forces have also been building ties and officers of the People’s Liberation Army-Air Force (PLAAF) have already visited India’s Air Force bases in 1995.[22] Similarly, the two navies have also been working together allaying each others doubts about Chinese naval presence in Myanmar or India’s maritime capabilities at its Fortress Andaman. India has offered to China’s envoy to visit Indian naval base at Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar. At a certain stage there were even reports of China and India preparing for joint military and naval exercises which, however, was denied by the Chinese side.[23]

Then there are various other bold initiatives that come about from outside the framework of JWG. (see Table 4) Within less than two months of the MPTA, for example, a Chinese ship “Zheng He” made a port visit to Bombay, which was the first of its kind in last 35 years. Before this only INS Mysore had visited Shanghai in 1958. Also, working on the basis of Chiunese guanxi (personal contacts) principle, exchanges between other opinion makers and members of strategic research institutions (like Institute for Defence Studies & Analyses, United Services Institution of India, Centre for Policy Research, and Rajiv Gandhi Foundation from India and China institute for Contemporary International Relations, China Association for Friendly International Contact, Fudan University etc. from China) have also been increasingly formalised. Similarly, Xinhua, People’s Dai and Beijing Review have their accredited correspondents in India and India’s Press Trust of India has a resident reporter in Beijing. The agreements on exchange of scholars (between the Indian Council for Social Science Research and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences signed at New Delhi in January 1992) and their Agreement on Radio and Television Cooperation (signed in Beijing on September 7, 1993) have broadly contributed to expanding mutual awareness. The Festival of China was staged in India in 1992 and Festival of India was held in China in April 1994. In fact, the Communist Party of China now has direct links with the Indian National Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Communist Party of India (Marxists). The two had also tried opening up direct flights between New Delhi and Beijing and now have telecom lines between various cities of the two countries. Contact have also evolved between various NGOs like trade unions and woman organisations, stimulating a great deal of interest and confidence.

In the de-ideologised post-Cold War world, trade has come to be perhaps the most durable CSBM which raises stakes in mutual security and peace amongst states, Though compared to their size and total foreign trade, the volume of Sino-lndian bilateral trade remains still very small yet, more than what is visible in terms of statistics, their border trade has substantially increased the traffic of goods and people in their border regions thus consolidating their border related CSBMs.[24] Garbyang (in Uttar Pradesh) was the first border port to be opened in February 1991 followed by Gunji (in Uttar Pradesh) in 1992 and later Shipki La (in Himachal Pradesh) in 1994. A fourth border point agreed upon in principle is yet to be opened. India has suggested an eastern route originating in Sikkim on which China has been evasive as it means recognising Sikkim’s accession to India. As an alternative, a route from Kalimpong in Dajeeling District in West Bengal, passing through Sikkim to Yatung in Chumbi Valley, is likely to be agreed upon. Amongst its other intangibles, in 1994, India became China’s largest trading partner in South Asia overtaking China’s long-standing close friend and ally Pakistan, This obtains for India a greater leverage and psychological advantage vis-a-vis Sine-Pakistan ties. And finally, talking of statistics, according to a recent study by US based Centre for Global Trade Development that monitors trade patterns of 220 countries, has predicted that trade between China and India may cross $ 25 billion by the year 2000. According to the study, this is possible because at their current rate of growth India’s total annual exports are expected to reach $ 90 billion and that of China (plus Hong Kong $225 billion after 1997) to $425 billion per annum.[25] The Sino-Indian Joint Business Council has, however, put the figure at a much moderate level of $ 5 billion by 2000.

[1] Zhao Weiwen and Giri Deshingkar. “Improving Sino-lndo Relations”, in Michael Krepon and Amit Sevak (ed.), Crisis Prevention..., op. cit, p. 227; Sumit Ganguly, op. cit., p. 12.

[2] Document of the Stockholm Conference, CSCE/SC 9.

[3] Masahiko Asada. “Confidence-Building Measures in East Asia”, Asian Survey, VoLxxvii No. 5, (May 1986) p. 491. 

[4] Ibid.

[5] Zhen Ruixiang, “Shifting obstacles in Sine-Indian relations”, The Pacific Review, Vol. 6, No.1 (1993) p. 66.

[6] Shen-chun Chuan. “Peking’s relations with India and Pakistan”, Issues & Studies, Vol. 25, No. 9 (September 1969), p. 146

[7] Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, ‘India-China Joint Press Communique”, Statement on Foreign Policy, (New Delhi: Ministry of External Affairs, External Publicity Division, October 1969), pp. 62-64; also Giri Deshingkar, ‘Gains from the China visit”, The Indian Express (New Delhi), 9 January, 1989.

[8] Sujit Mansingh, ” India-China relations in the post-Cold War era”, Asian Survey, VoLxxiv, No. 3 (March 1994), p. 269.

[9] Ibid., p. 293.

[10] Chinese foreign office spokesperson described it as “positively significant in increasing mutual understanding between the two armed forces.” See The Statesman (Delhi), 31 July, 1992.

[11] n. 6, p. 292.

[12] This is, however, not to deny that some 01 the difference on the nuclear question have also increased during the 1990s. For example, China is now a signatory to the NPT (1992) and an adherent to the MTCR and during CTBT negotiations it, in fact, sided with Washington in asking for India’s signatures on the draft treaty. What is more worrying for Sino-India ties is that China has used this newly gained club membership to obtain credibility whereas its assistance to Pakistan’s nuclear and missile programme has continued unabetted.

[13]  “Statemerit by the Minister of External Affairs on India’s policy towards China, 26 August, 1970” in A. Appadorai, Selected Documents on India’s Foreign Policy and Relations 1947-1972, Vol. 1, (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1962), pp. 743.44; also n. 7, p. 142.

[14] First during Secretary (in Ministry of External Affairs) Eric Gonsalves’ visit to Beijing, Deng mentioned this proposal during an interview to an Indian journalist representing the not so well know journal Vikrant. Later Deng revived this proposal again during his discussions with a visiting Member of Indian Parliament, Dr. Subamanian Swamy, saying that “conditions are not ripe now for settlement, then other aspects of normalization can take place.” For details see Gyneshwar Chaturvedi, India-China Relations 1947 to Present Day, (Agra: M.G. Publishers, 1961), pp. 16162; also Sujit Mansingh and Steven I. Levine, “China and India: Moving beyond confrontation”, Problems of Communism. Volxxxviii Nos. 23 (March-June 1969), p. 36.

[15] G.S. Bhargava, “Dealing with China”, Mainstream (New Delhi), 7 January 1969.

[16] Many scholars have tried to explain this change of ready 1990s in terms of change in global senario where collapse of Soviet Union and Tiananmen Square crisis followed by western sanctions had compelled Beijing to search for friends and allies. But it seems that Sino-Indian rapprochement was still the most important factor and while India had described Tiananmen incidents as China’s internal matter, China also made no comments on demolition of Babri Masjid which sent correct signal of change. See Allen S. Whiting, “China’s Foreign Rdations after 40 Years”, in Anthony J. Kane (ed.), China Briefing, 1990, (Boulder: Westview Press, 1990), p. 67; and Hwei-ling Huo, “Patterns of Behaviour in China’s Foreign Policy: The Gulf Crisis and Beyond”, Asian Survey, Volxxxii, No. 3 (March 1992), p, 267.

[17] Sea John W. Garver, “China-India Rivalry in Nepal: The Clash over Chinese Arms Safes”, Asian Survey, Vol.xxxi No.10 (October 1991), p.968; and, Abu Taher Salahuddin Ahmed, “Sine-Indian Relations: Problems, Progress and Prospects”, BIISS Journal, Vol.15, No. 4 (October 1994), p, 384-65.

[18] Mao Siwei, “China and the Kashmir issue”, Strategic Analysis (New Delhi), Vol. xvii, No. 12 (March 1995), pp. 1572-97. In fact, according to some experts, it is China’s sensitivities about Xinjiang that partly explains Beijing’s need to evolve “special relationship” with Islamabad.

[19] T. Karki Hussain, “Relations with China”, World Focus (New Delhi), Nos. 167-166 (November-December 1993). p. 48.  

[20] Lt. Gen. K.K. Nanda (Retd), ‘Promising New Turn in Sino-Indian Relations”, Defence Seminar (New Delhi), Vol. III No. 3 (March 1993). pp. 5.7. All subsequent quotations from this treaty are from the text of my preceding article in this volume.

[21] Agreement between the Government of the Republic of India and the Government of the People’s Republic of China on Confidence Building Measures in the Military Field along the Line of Actual Control in the India-China Border Areas. Signed November 29,1996. All the subsequent quotations from this treaty are taken from this text.

[22] Officers of PLAAF have been visiting Indian Air Force bases”, The Times of India (New Delhi), 22 December, 1995, reprinted in Strategic Digest, Vol. xxvi, No. 3 (March 1996). pp. 444-45.

[23]  “Sine-Indian Joint Military Exercises plans denied”, Xinhua (in English) printed in Foreign Broadcast Information Service . China (henceforth FBIS-CHI), 4-244, 20 December 1994, p. 12.

[24] These 15 items are wool, goat skin, sheep skin, yak tail, yak hair, goat, sheep, horses, salt, borax, China clay, butter, silk, and Szaibel yite.

[25] Report stresses trade between India, China”, Xinhua (in English), FBIS-CHC94-103, 27 May 1994, p, 15.


Contd... Part 2

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