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China’s rise, challenges India now faces discussed at Pune Dialogue on National Security

India needs stronger strategic effort for coherent China strategy: Fareed Zakaria

pune Updated: Sep 16, 2017 00:10 IST
HT Correspondent
(From left) Air Marshal Bhushan Gokhale, Shen Dingli, Shaida Mohammad Abdali, Vijay Kelkar, C Raja Mohan and Tsutomu Kikuchi during the Pune Dialogue on National Security at YASHADA, Baner in Pune on Friday.
(From left) Air Marshal Bhushan Gokhale, Shen Dingli, Shaida Mohammad Abdali, Vijay Kelkar, C Raja Mohan and Tsutomu Kikuchi during the Pune Dialogue on National Security at YASHADA, Baner in Pune on Friday.(Pratham Gokhale/HT PHOTO)

The reduced power and influence of the United States in world politics today, the phenomenal rise of China; the economic successes of nations like Turkey and Brazil and the challenges before India in a rapidly changing world were the dominant themes discussed at the inaugural session of the third Pune Dialogue on National Security (PDNS) on Friday.

In his keynote address foreign policy analyst, C Raja Mohan, director Carnegie India, said that a number of assumptions that had guided the world over the last 25 years were being questioned in a big way today. These assumptions were that the world would become unipolar with the collapse of the Soviet Union, that economic globalization would be relentless; that supra-national and trans-national bodies such as the United Nations would have a bigger role to play and that new technologies such as the Internet “would create wealth and free individuals.”

China had emerged as the second largest economy in the world after the United States and the “rise of China would be the single-most biggest factor influencing our neighbourhood,” Raja Mohan said.

“India’s capability to shape its region is being tested,” he said, while stating that India will need to work hard with win-win partnerships and strategies to strengthen its ties with neighbours.

In his introductory remarks, PDNS convenor and former Vice Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Bhushan Gokhale (retd) explained the nature of the Pune Dialogue and its emphasis on sensitizing the common man on national security matters. The eminent scientist and PIC president RA Mashelkar gave the welcome address to the national and international participants, which PIC’s vice-president Vijay Kelkar, chaired the first session on the theme, ‘India and the Emerging World Order’.

Prof. Shen Dingli (China): The world order is changing and the world has now become less centralised. America is less powerful today. China has benefitted from globalization and has surplus manufacturing capability. China wants to play a role in the re-building of Iraq and Syria; it wants a reconciliation between the two because this will open up business opportunities for China. This is also the rationale behind the Chinese policy of giving low interest loans to other nations.

Prof Wang Dong (China)

Wang Dong during Pune Dialogue on National Security at YASHADA, Baner in Pune. (Pratham Gokhale/HT PHOTO)

We have entered the post-America world. The West-dominated world order is coming to an end. India and China hold the key to the new world order. China and India need to be friends, and we should not allow differences to escalate.

Prof Tsutomu Kikuchi (Japan)

Tsutomu Kikuchi during Pune Dialogue on National Security at YASHADA, Baner in Pune. (Pratham Gokhale/HT PHOTO)

The US and China have substantial influence on Asia; no other country has as much influence on affairs in Asia. China is becoming confident, but also insecure. The economic slowdown in China is adding to its internal insecurities. Japan’s relations with India and the rest of Asia are becoming stronger.

Afghanistan Ambassador Shaida Mohammad Abdali

Shaida Mohammad Abdali during Pune Dialogue on National Security at YASHADA, Baner in Pune. (Pratham Gokhale/HT PHOTO)

Terrorism has played a major role in shaping the world order. The Afghan War was the waterloo of the world order. The distrust between the world powers is at its peak. India has been sincerely fighting terrorism over the last many years and at least now, India’s positive role in Afghanistan is being acknowledged.

Fareed Zakaria, (US, on video)

After 400-500 years of Western domination, we are now seeing the “rise of the rest”. The US has less power and influence today. It is merely the single-most powerful country today and not the sole shaper of the world. The rise of China is the single-largest shift in contemporary world politics. China has been growing substantially faster than India and its economy is four times larger than India’s. The Chinese expansion is extraordinary and the Chinese strategy is very well thought out. The Indian government needs to put in a much stronger strategic effort to put together a coherent alternative strategy to China.