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A Beijing strategist has advocated that China should help divide India.
China should support factions of the Assamese, Kashmiris and Tamilians and break-up India into 20-30 independent nation-states like Europe and eradicate the caste system, suggests an unsigned article posted on the Beijing website of a Chinese military think-tank.
“If China takes a little action, the so-called Great Indian Federation can be broken up,” said the article posted on August 8, coinciding with the 13th round of India-China border dispute talks in New Delhi.
It was posted on the website of the China International Institute for Strategic Studies, and signed by a writer who has taken the nom de plume “Strategy.”
Chinese strategists and the media regularly express scepticism over India’s domestic stability, but it is rare to hear the Chinese advocate an active policy of helping split up India.
The only time the Chinese are known to have supported insurgencies in India was in the northeast just after 1962.
“The write-up could not have been published without the permission of the Chinese authorities, but it is sure that Beijing will wash its hands out of this if the matter is taken up with it by New Delhi,” wrote DS Rajan, Director of the Chennai Centre for China Studies, in a translation summarising the Chinese article on the centre’s website.
“Panic towards such outbursts will be a mistake, but ignoring them will prove to be costly for India,” Rajan wrote.
The strategist said Beijing’s China-centric Asia policy provides for splitting India and recovering 90,000 sq km of territory in southern Tibet.
He also suggested that China ally with Pakistan, Nepal, and Bhutan, support the United Liberation Front of Asom to attain an independent Assam, and encourage Bangladesh toward the independence of West Bengal.
The target audience is the leadership within China, where some influential are known to be frustrated over the delay in resolving the border dispute.
“Sino-Indian relations are in general sound. Both sides are keen to solve the border issue,” Rajan told HT. “Some strategists are bringing out their comments mainly for the Chinese audience.”
In June, Beijing’s state-run newspaper, the Global Times, wrote an editorial that said India feels superior to China because of its “advanced political system” but faces a ‘disappointing’ and ‘unstable’ domestic situation compared to China.
In response to the article, the Ministry of External Affairs said: “The article in question appears to be an expression of individual opinion and does not accord with the officially stated position of China on India-China relations conveyed to us on several occasions, including at the highest level, most recently by the State Councillor Dai Bingguo during his visit to India.”
“We continue to maintain that opinions and assessment on the state of India-China relations should be expressed after careful judgement based on the long-term interests of building a stable relationship between the two countries,” the MEA added.