Author: Chandrashekar TS

M.AM.PhiL/(PhD SNU South Korea)
India’s Dependence on the Middle East for Oil: Has India found an alternative and what are the options?
Analysis, Featured, National

India’s Dependence on the Middle East for Oil: Has India found an alternative and what are the options?

Multiple studies indicate that India’s oil needs will be more than any other country by 2040
Domestic prices of petrol and diesel in India are linked to global fluctuations. 60% of India’s crude oil requirement is fulfilled by Iraq, Iran and Saudi Arabia
Aggressive purchase of foreign currency for importing oil leads to devaluation of rupee and ultimately affecting India’s purchasing power
It will have a cascading effect like depreciation of rupee and will see a big rise in commodity prices leading to inflation.
This is where the importance of domestic production, strengthening of indigenous industries and import substitution comes into picture.
Alternative energy sources like natural gas and solar power is one way to reduce dependence on imported crude oil.

$400 Billion Iran-China Treaty and US Troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – How worried should India be?
Analysis, Asia, Big Block of 4, Featured

$400 Billion Iran-China Treaty and US Troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – How worried should India be?

For the first time in history, China which was moving towards the East is turning to South Asia and the Middle East and trying to play a role in the Indian Ocean region.
China’s interest in Iran was bolstered by decades of Anti-American sentiments there.
China’s aim would also be to contain India’s presence in the Middle-East and cut its influence and relations with Iran.
A destabilized Afghanistan can have its effect on India as they can support terror organizations in Kashmir and aid forces who can indulge in hijacking, kidnapping, drugs trade and other anti-national activities.
For India the happenings in the Middle East, one in Iran and other in Afghanistan, will be a test to its geopolitical strategy.

Crippled 5G strategy of China and the attacks on Reliance Jio
Analysis, Asia, Featured, National

Crippled 5G strategy of China and the attacks on Reliance Jio

China wants to use the 5G technology to enhance its global influence through “digital encirclement of the world”
Companies from China own 36% of all 5G standard-essential patents, more than double their share of comparable 4G patents
China plans for the dominance of the virtual world through 5G networks in South Asia and Europe which would be provided by Chinese technology giants.
Countries and militaries who do not have indigenous 5G capabilities for IOT platforms and who allow Chinese 5G, could then become hostage to Chinese technology
China is facing stiff competition from Indian companies like Jio (Reliance) and few Indian actors are vandalizing Jio mobile towers and attacking the owner in the name of farmers protests.
Jio also has plans to roll out 5G enabled smartphones in collaboration with Google which will be a severe blow to Chinese companies
Political parties and leaders backing the protests in the name of farmers must think in the nation’s interest and analyze whether they have to play according to foreign designs to divide us or stay united.

China’s Mess in Nepal: The Many arms of CCP which are Strangulating the Himalayan country
Analysis, Asia

China’s Mess in Nepal: The Many arms of CCP which are Strangulating the Himalayan country

Chinese influence and interference in the Himalayan country has increased and the Communist government has laid a red carpet for Chinese officials and companies.
A Nepal government report pointed to Beijing encroaching on about 36 hectares of Nepal’s land and also that it stood to lose a further several hundred hectares of land to Beijing.
Huawei, the Chinese company which has been infamous for hacking and data theft, hacked 200 Nepali websites, including some government websites.
Chinese Nationals hacked ATMs of many prominent banks including Nepal Rashtriya Bank and this caused massive public outrage against China.
Chinese people and companies were found to be involved in bride trafficking, hacking, and data theft in Nepal.
There is a growing fear in Nepal that China’s debt drap diplomacy encroaching land, water, air may follow in Nepal.
It is for the people of the two countries to realise that the destiny and fortune of both are inter-linked and any attempts by forces inimical to the interests of both the civilizations have to be resisted and terminated.

Military Coup in Myanmar: China angle and its effect on India
Analysis, Asia, Featured, National

Military Coup in Myanmar: China angle and its effect on India

In January, the Chinese government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, met military chief Min Aung Hlaing during a visit to Myanmar. Min Aung Hlaing has now assumed power after overthrowing the civilian government.
When western countries criticised the Suu Kyi government’s response to the Rohingya crisis, China chose to remain silent.
Myanmar ministers had openly warned against falling into the Chinese “debt trap” and costs of many China funded projects were reduced drastically. China had proposed 38 projects under CMEC but Myanmar had approved only nine.
Myanmar had also rejected China’s request to conduct joint naval exercises and an offer of a submarine from China. Instead, Myanmar chose to acquire its first ever submarine for the Myanmar Navy from India
Observers believe that the growing closeness with India could have forced China to exercise power by influencing a section of Myanmar military which was close to it and take control.
India has a great challenge in the neighborhood. It would be ideal for it and the subcontinent if Myanmar returns to democracy where people’s opinion is counted over dictates from Beijing.

India’s Humanitarian Aid reflects its age-old ethos of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”
Analysis, Featured, National

India’s Humanitarian Aid reflects its age-old ethos of “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam”

When the world was reeling under COVID-19, India under the leadership of PM Narendra Modi, stepped up to provide medical assistance to not only domestic but also to other countries in the world.
India does not in any way wish to dominate any country in the world with forced drought, control of river flows, debt traps, changing land, air, water boundaries
Donors’ clubs like the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), or China’s Credit have attached conditionalities to the assistance they offer. China is known to use aid to further their commercial interests eg Resources, Military Strategy, Strategic and economic goals.
The 2015 Nepal earthquake, one of the deadliest in its history, India, launched Operation Maitri by deploying the Indian Army, the Air Force, and other specialised teams.
Some of the big-ticket aid programmes that have propelled India into the donors league include a $1 billion (about Rs 5,630 crore) line of credit to Bangladesh and pledges of $2 billion in reconstruction assistance to Afghanistan.
In October 2018, the ‘India for Humanity’ initiative was launched to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and honour his service to humanity.
During the current Corona crisis, India has extended COVID-related medical assistance including testing kits, protective gear and Hydroxychloroquine and other medicines to around 90 plus countries

China in Myanmar: Kokang, Debt Trap and Economic Corridor
Analysis, Asia, Featured

China in Myanmar: Kokang, Debt Trap and Economic Corridor

Insurgent groups like MNDAA are part of a wider rebel alliance in northern Myanmar which also includes ethnic Palaung, Kachin and Arakanese forces and is supported by the powerful China-backed United Wa State Army.
Top Kokang leadership went to China, where they received training and promises of support to run the nationalist Chinese Kuomintang KMT out of Myanmar.
Myanmar has pointed fingers at Beijing for arming insurgent groups with sophisticated weapons and sought international cooperation to suppress rebel groups.
When the Myanmar military busted a huge cache of weapons including surface-to-air missiles from the insurgents, most were Chinese weapons
There has been a view in Naypyitaw that China was using its influence with the terror groups as a bargaining chip for smooth implementation of Belt and Road Initiative projects in Myanmar

Why US will be ill-advised to sanction India over its purchase of Russia’s S-400 air defence system
Analysis, Defence & Security, Featured, World

Why US will be ill-advised to sanction India over its purchase of Russia’s S-400 air defence system

US India share values of democracy, free trade, liberal entrepreneurship, human rights, peaceful change of elected governments, fight against terrorism.
American security and defense needs are coinciding with India’s concerns. India is a direct victim of Jihad sponsored by Pakistan, ISIS, Al Qaeda, while America is fighting the same elements from South Asia to the Middle East and across the world.
The Rise of China and threat to freedom of navigation, usurping land, air space, water, forcing drought on riparian states, debt trap diplomacy and change of borders unilaterally, have made both India and America see the world in the same light in defence of democracy.
The cutting-edge S-400 system is superior to the patriot air defence system in all aspects and India has to cater to its own pressing needs.
– Long standing US-India ties and growing US-India defence deals worth billions of dollars cannot be risked over a strategically important deal with Russia.
It is for India to decide what weapons it needs and how it safeguards its 1.3 Billion people. The US should not see India from its own vision of Russia but be sympathetic to its own needs.

China’s Military Modernization game in Ladakh – China-Pakistan Nexus & India’s Way
Analysis, Asia, Defence & Security

China’s Military Modernization game in Ladakh – China-Pakistan Nexus & India’s Way

China is accused of being a copycat manufacturer of cheap defence products at its mid- and small-sized private companies, giving the PLA more choices at lower costs.
China’s latest and fully home-manufactured utility helicopter, the Z-20, made its long-expected first public appearance under the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Tibet Military Command.
Chinese self-produced unmanned helicopters were recently equipped to PLA’s Tibet Military Command troops at the border with India.
China’s new-generation off-road assault vehicles with intelligent equipment have been commissioned to PLA’s border defense troops stationed in Southwestern Tibet.
China has started building an unmanned intelligent research mothership expected to conduct marine surveys by coordinating with drones, unmanned ships or submersibles.