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India-China Cordiality Beneficial To Both Nuclear Powers

The reason being, the increasing trade between two countries. In 2023 trade between the two countries was worth 121 billion dollars, which is expected to increase to 150 billion dollars this year

Prof. Neelam Mahajan Singh

Recently, while participating in a symposium, I met Dr. Kavita A. Sharma, academician, author of several books, i.e. Internationalisation of Education, Sixty Years Of University Grants Commission, The Windmills Of The Mind, Hindu College, Delhi — A People’s Movement etc.
Several journalists and educators participated in this discussion. India and China are neighboring countries and their traditional relationships had many ups and downs. Although at present diplomatic relations between the two countries are at the lowest ebb. However there is no possibility of a war between India and China.

The reason being, the increasing trade between two countries. In 2023 trade between the two countries was worth 121 billion dollars, which is expected to increase to 150 billion dollars this year. China is a major player in international trade and commerce, hence both India and China will certainly avoid a war. Both the nations are nuclear powers and as such they are aware that a war will cause great harm to their economies. Besides, its industrial production will be adversely affected. Same situation will happen in India. Therefore, both the countries do not want war and are working through diplomatic negotiations and back channels to break the existing deadlock. Many rounds of talks have taken place between the two nations since the clashes in the Galvan Valley.

There is an effort between the India-China to start the peace process through the backdoor diplomacy. Dr. S. Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister, has been India’s Ambassador to China. Diplomatic relations between the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of India have become somewhat sour in past few years. Dr. Kavita A. Sharma, herself is an educationist, former principal of Hindu College, ex Director of The India International Center, New Delhi and has obtained a degree in LL.M. from British Columbia. Her well researched book; ‘India and China: Expansion, Equity and Excellence’, is publised by Springer Nature Singapore Pvt. Ltd. She has reviewed the historical developments of China till date. Post ‘Opium War’, Chinese rulers focused on education and empowered China economically through ‘Mandarins’. Dr. Kavita A. Sharma, mentioned in detail about the 5000 years old culture of India-China relations, their history in which the youth has maximum importance and participation. For this reason, China educated its citizens to make them self-reliant, and today China is playing a leading role in political, economic globalization on its own.

In Chapter 10, the author says, “China has coordinated modernization, industry and technological development”. The Chinese socialist system is controlled by the State. It is infact a Communist country with State’s control. In India too, special attention has been drawn on technical self-reliance in the education sector. Digital technology has brought immense growth to world’s economies. Mr. Shyam Saran, I.F.S. former Foreign Secretary of India has been quoted as saying, “the cultural and economic relations have existed since ancient times between India-China”. Buddhism spread from India to the land of China. Since ancient times, the people of China had chosen Indian universities, namely Nalanda University and Takshila University, to receive education in Buddhism because at that time these two universities were one of their kinds in the world as important centers of education. 1100 to 771 B.C. National Institutes of Education were established in China. Between 1840 and 1911, the traditional education policy was transformed into contemporary modernity.

On the one hand, special emphasis was laid on education in India, right from the Vedic period, while on the other hand, the historical characteristics were reflected in Indian culture. Along with China’s high-level education policy, in India also the private sector was established in the field of education, through the National Policy for Education, 1968, Kothari Commission, Ramamurthy Committee, National Knowledge Commission, Narayana Murthy Committee etc. gave several recommendations. Another important decision taken in China was the globalization of education, in which the State gave economic assistance to their citizens. Local people benefited from bringing foreign scholars into Chinese education system. The Indira Gandhi Open University was an important step in India, to extend education opportunities to Indians. The Ministry of Education and the University Grants Commission have played a special role in providing education till grass roots. In a World Bank report of 1988-89, it was said that development of the country is possible by incorporating education and culture to strengthen the economy. In Chapter 9, Dr. Kavita A. Sharma has said that after the liberalization of the Indian economy, India established itself in the world rankings.

In 1949, India established diplomatic relations with China. In this way India became one of the first countries to recognize the People’s Republic of China. The syllabus of the imperialistic British Empire is still being taught in India. Shyam Saran, vetran diplomat and author says, “the benefits of digitization and international cooperation that India has received are essential for the education of the masses”. China attacked India in 1962 and while occupying a lot of Indian land, and declared a unilateral ceasefire on 21 November 1962. From that time till today relations between the two countries have not been trustworthy. After the death of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri extended the hand of friendship to China, but India did not get much success, because China had unjustly supported Pakistan in the India-Pakistan war of 1965. India-Pakistan ceasefire agreement was signed on 23 September 1965. In retrospect it may be stated that it is clear that the friendship between India and China, is prevalent since ancient times, has gone through many hurdles and unstable phases in the modern times. The border dispute between India-China continues till date.

Although there has been a huge improvement in the relations between the two, yet there are several unresolved issues in their relationship. The biggest problem between China and India are border disputes and India giving protection to Tibet and Dhalai Lama. PM Modi welcomed President Xi Jinping in Ahmedabad in September 2014. India-China signed three pacts, and it was hoped that the bonhomie between India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China’s President Xi Jinping would harmonize the relationship between the two countries. The state authorities rolled out a red carpet as President Xi Jinping, was the first top Chinese leader to visit Gujarat, was given a warm welcome after an Air China special aircraft carrying him and his delegation landed at the airport here. Giant billboards in Mandarin, Gujarati and English were put up at various places to welcome him. President Xi’s three-day visit was aimed at ramping up trade and investments, besides having discussions on substantive issues including the contentious border dispute.

At present, China-India are engaged in their respective development. China and India of the 21st century are rivals, but both the countries will have to resolve their differences through diplomatic dialogues and try to play a leading global role. Friendship; instead of enmity is beneficial for both the countries. Both neighbours should move towards a permanent peace plan.



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