Journal : Global Times (Chinese) Date : Author : Hubo Feng, Yu Yang Page No. : 3

(On-line version titled: “Warning” China? Indian media hypes Modi’s speech on Independence Day, analysts: Indian government “abducted” by domestic public opinion)

After many rounds of dialogue, China and India decided last month to “disengage” their front-line troops in batches in order to ease border tensions, but the Indian side is still stays put in many areas in a show of tough policy towards China.  Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s his speech on the 15th, at the 73rd anniversary of India’s independence celebration and declaration that “from the Line of Control between India and Pakistan to the Line of Actual Control between India and China, any country that attempts to threaten India’s sovereignty would suffer (the Indian side’s) forceful and appropriate” response comes In that background. .Many Indian media speculated that Modi was taking the opportunity to send a signal to China. In his 86 minute speech, Modi recounted his achievements since he took office , recalled the founding fathers, and called on the whole country to work together to face the new corona pneumonia epidemic, floods, landslides, locusts, thunderstorms and other natural events and challenges from disasters. He reiterated the “self-reliant India” policy, interpreting it as “strengthening one’s own development” rather than blindly reducing foreign imports, emphasizing the important role of the younger generation. Modi said that foreign direct investment in India increased by 18% last year, showing that international capital is increasingly favoring the Indian market, “this is due to India’s advantages in policies, systems, and infrastructure construction.” “India is becoming the eyes of many global companies. “Made in India” will be transformed into “Made for the world”.

Regarding the China-related statements that are of common concern to all parties, Modi did not directly name China, but highlighted the “challenges brought to India by conflicts in border areas.” He said that whether it is the India-Pakistan border or the India-China border, “any country that attempts to threaten the sovereignty of India will be subject to a powerful and appropriate counterattack.”Nevertheless, many in the Indian media believe that Modi’s speech conveyed a kind of “warning” to China. According to the comment on the Indian “Daily News Analysis” website, Modi’s Independence Day speech “clearly” emphasized the supremacy of Indian sovereignty and conveyed a message to China and Pakistan, that is, “anyone who dares to covet Indian territory is doomed to fail”. The Times of India also stated in the report that although Modi did not directly name  China or Pakistan, the “expansionism” and “terrorism” he mentioned in his speech are the exact “euphemisms” for these two countries. “. The spokesperson of the Indian opposition Congress party Surjawala even publicly questioned Modi “why did he dare not name China”, and asked Modi “when China has (already) invaded Indian territory today”, how will the government repel them and protect the integrity of the country’s territory? 

However, some analysts believe that compared with the elaboration of issues of economics, agriculture, social security and other aspects, Modi did not actually pay too much attention when talking about the border issue challenge. Less than 150 words out of the more than 8,500 words in all. Looked at against the full text, it can almost be described as “a master stroke”, which seems to leave room for imagination for the timely turn of Sino-Indian relations in the future. On the day (India’s Independence Day), the Indian Embassy in China posted on social media platforms that the Indian Ambassador to China, Tang Yongsheng (Chinese name of Vikram Misri) met high-level Chinese officials on the 15th to “explain India’s position on the border situation in eastern Ladakh”. “India Today” reported that this is Tang Yongsheng’s second important meeting with high-level Chinese officials in the past three days. The Times of India quoted government and military sources as claiming that China has continued to confront India in the border area, so Tang Yongsheng had to break from routine and find another way to meet with senior Chinese officialsIndian Government officials believe that “this appears to be part of China’s strategy”. “China wants India to accept its aggressive actions while maintaining dialogue between the two countries at the diplomatic level”. “But this is unacceptable”. The Chinese government has been in the midst of the standoff since the beginning of the year. However, some sources told the Huan Qiu Shi Bao reporter, Tang Yongsheng’s visit to senior Chinese officials is not unusual, and one should not “over interpret it”. The Chinese side has along sought to move in the same direction together with the Indian side, in sincere practical actions to restore peace and stability in the border region, since the border standoff between the two countries.In addition to the Indian media, there are also voices within the Indian government that unreasonably criticize China. According to “India Today”, Indian Ambassador to Russia, Varma said in an interview with the media that India hopes to solve the problem through dialogue, “but China is trying to gain a one-way advantage by changing the status quo.” “India is determined to defend territorial integrity.” However, he also mentioned that the Indian Minister of Foreign Affairs and the National Security Advisor are maintaining communication with China. “Once the two sides completely disengage on the border, cool down the situation and restore peace and tranquility, relations are expected to return to the right track”.In response to the so-called accusations made by some Indian politicians and the media, the spokesperson of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has repeatedly stated that the rights and wrongs of the Sino-Indian standoff are very clear, and that the responsibility for that does not lie with China at all.

Some Indian analysts believe that the Indian government has almost no wiggle room to deal with border issues, because it has been “abducted” by domestic public opinion to a considerable degree.

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