In this paper, Sitaraman discusses clashes along the India-China border in the summer of 2002 during the early peak of the COVID-19 pandemic
According to the author, since the clash “the political and military relationship between India and China rapidly deteriorated. India and China have aggressively fortified the border areas and they arerapidly building military structures along the border areas that include the construction of access roads, bunkers, helipads, ammo depots, and placement of artillery.
Indian Army Chief General MM Narvane stated that it is a “matter of concern” for India that the Chinese are engaging in large-scale infrastructure build-up and that the defense posture of both countries along the LAC (Line of Actual Control) is one of readiness. As of April 2022, despite several rounds of corps commander lever talks, there is no indication that there are any substantial shifts in the positions of both countries away from a posture of heightened preparedness.
This paper examines the economic and political consequences of the summer 2020 military clashes along the LAC. The border clash is having cross-domain repercussions in the areas of (a) bilateral trade; (b) cyber and mobile tech; and (3) bi-lateral travel and visa issues between India and China. This paper will discuss how India is struggling to reduce its trade and economic dependence on China, cut-off its reliance on Chinese mobile and cyber technology to better manage cyberattacks and hacking, and finally, both countries are engaging in tit-for-tat travel bans and using bilateral visa issue as a political weapon.
Dr. Srini Sitaraman is a professor at Daniel K. Inouye Asia Pacific Center for Security Studies. The views expressed in this article are his own and do not reflect those of DKI APCSS, the U.S. Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.