India's trespassing both illegal and unwise

Updated 2017-08-24 11:03:37 China Daily
A Foreign Ministry photo released shows Indian troops encroaching on Chinese territory. (Provided to China Daily)

A Foreign Ministry photo released shows Indian troops encroaching on Chinese territory. (Provided to China Daily)

I am sure you must know or have heard of someone who has made a serious error in life, paid dearly for it, and yet after many years seems to be on the verge of making exactly the same mistake. This is the case with India, which seems intent on repeating the colossal mistake it made in 1962. There is still time for it to remedy its error, however.

India's troops are trespassing in Donglang. The Sino-Indian border is a complex and fascinating legacy of history. Most of it has neither been delineated (agreed in words or on paper) nor demarcated (both parties having gone to the area and physically drawn a boundary). The infamous, so-called McMahon line was delineated (not demarcated) by the British, and it is irrelevant because China refused to accept it. However, the 220 kilometer Sikkim sector of the border between China and India which Indian troops crossed on June 18 was clearly demarcated in 1890 and has been respected by both parties ever since. India has clearly broken international law here.

Already a few senior Indian politicians have declared that Indians should not buy Chinese goods. This will hurt India more than China. To begin with, China's exports to India account for 2 percent of China's total exports. More important, for India, if Chinese investment in India stops, it will hurt the Indian economy drastically and will have a huge impact on Indian jobs. It will also hurt the Indian consumers who will have to buy much more expensive products of the same quality. India's economy, after decades of bad planning, is on the rise, but it needs trade with China and Chinese investment to continue to do so.

Moreover, it will destabilize South Asia and reinforce India's image as a regional hegemon, thus undermining the very objective India wants to achieve-establish mutually beneficial relations with Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka and the Maldives. The era of "backyards" is fading fast, being replaced by the more progressive and globally accepted ideas of economic and social development based on bilateral and multilateral relationships and supportive mechanisms. China's Belt and Road Initiative is for any country which wishes to add value to all and thus to its own economy.

India's aggression in Donglang also undermines its dream to become a regional or even global power. If India cannot assume moral leadership within its own vicinity, how can it do so in the global arena?

India's Donglang aggression is also dangerous. China has settled its borders with 12 neighbors via talks. This is exactly what China has repeatedly offered to India.

China is a peace-loving country and has, in an amazing show of self-control, refrained from retaliating. The entire international community hopes India will withdraw its troops within its own borders, and thus step back from the brink of war, allowing peace to prevail again.

The author Aamir Khan is an associate professor at Lahore School of Economics, Pakistan.

Also in the News

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time
Showbiz2016/06/16 13:58January 24 2018 15:53:58

Nicole Kidman Recalls Oscar Glory: Loneliest Time

Attending Shanghai International Film Festival, Nicole Kidman talks about her role in "Grace of Monaco".

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts
Also in the News2014/05/01 12:16January 24 2018 15:53:58

Labor Day Travel Peak Starts

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'
Also in the News2014/04/18 13:18January 24 2018 15:53:58

Johnny Depp Delivers a Speech 'Evolve the Future' in 'Transcendence'

Hollywood star Johnny Depp's speech in the upcoming new film "Transcendence" has been disclosed on Friday, April 11th.

Most Watched

News:
China World Business Sports Showbiz Audio
Video:
C4 My Chinese Life The Sound Stage China Revealed Showbiz Video Travel Video
Photos:
China World Fun Travel Entertainment Sports
Travel:
Beijing Shanghai Guangzhou
Lifestyle:
Live Music Opera & Classical Movies Traditional Shows Exhibitions
Learn Chinese:
Chinese Studio Living Chinese Everyday Chinese Just For Fun Chinese Culture Buzzwords