Disengagement in Ladakh? India loses to China — substantively and symbolically

India-China agreement
[armour pullback in Ladakh?]

Interviewed by Rediff.com; a botched and truncated version published Feb 22, 2021, at

The full interview below:

Q 1: Do you see the ongoing military disengagement in Ladakh between the Indian and Chinese troops as having helped the Chinese consolidate on the gains they have made in Ladakh in 2020?

A: Definitely yes. The military advantage the Indian army had gained by the Special Frontier Force occupying the heights of the Rezang La-Rechin La ridge on the Kailash Range is lost without the PLA withdrawing to east of the Khurnak Fort line – where the Indian claims lie, rather than only some distance from Finger 8 on the northern shore of the Pangong Lake to the Sirijap Plain. And the Chinese continue to obstruct Indian patrols seeking legitimately to access Indian territory northwest-wards of the Y-Junction. 
Having achieved success at the negotiating table in getting Indian troops to climb down from the Kailash range hilltops,  and India to accept Finger 3 as the limit of its army’s presence in the Pangong area (forsaking, in the process, Indian claims over the entire swathe of land stretching from Finger 4, past the Sirijap Plain, to way east of the Khurnak line and then, as expected, stalling the 10th round of talks (that occurred) a couple of days back at the Corps commander-level talks when it came to discussing the steps to lift the blockade and allow Indian patrols to Hot Springs, Gogra and other points northwestwards, the PLA is sitting pretty. And because the Chinese are big on symbolism, it may be noted, the PLA have fielded its so-called “southern Xizang (Tibet) military district” head Major General Liu Lin, junior in rank to Lieutenant General PK Menon, commander of XIV Corps at these border talks. Having recognized the rank-asymmetry — meaning the PLA had assigned less importance to realizing peace then the Indian side did — after the first such meeting last year when the then Leh-based Corps Lt Gen Harinder Singh officiated, the Indian army should have immediately followed up the next time around by sending Liu’s rank equivalent — some Major General, any Major General, from that formation.
Losing out thus in both symbolic and substantive terms, how’s any of this a success for India?

Q. 2: I am going to quote from a recent article of yours which stated ` New Delhi’s desperation has led to a peace process of impermanent but linked des-escalations, which Beijing may convert into opportunity for annexing territory in small parcels’.Can you elaborate on this given that several defence analysts believe China is already sitting on over 60 square kilometres of Indian land taken in 2020 while the fate of the land taken in the Depsang plains is hanging in the air. Your comments.

A: Depending on how scrupulously one tabulates exactly how much Indian territory has been ceded, lost, or simply been eased out of Indian control by the inattentiveness and laxity of Indian forces – the army and ITBP — over the years compounded by the la di- dah attitude of the Indian government to such loss, the actual territorial gains to China may be quite considerable over the 3,400 km length of the Line of Actual Control. So 60 sq kms here, 1,000 sq km there (in Depsang) could only be the proverbial tip of the iceberg!

Q.3: Up to last year, India was patrolling all eight Fingers on northern shore of Pangong Lake as these were on the Indian side. Today this has been reduced to the area between Fingers one to three. Can you elaborate.

A: The astonishing thing is the Indian army stopped contending for the land east of Finger 8 for many years until now when Indian army has effective control only up to Finger 3. In effect, the Sirijap-Khurnak expanse has been permitted to slip into China’s lap without so much as a squeak from Delhi! India and its army seem to have no answer for this Chinese policy generally of creeping territorial aggrandizement.

Q.4: It is believed that this disengagement and the ones to follow after subsequent talks is taking us to the 2013 line. Do you think that is so? Then how are we going to see any kind of status quo ante at all in Ladakh?

A: I fear that the manner in which India has accepted the process of, and the conditions for, the mutual “verifiable” pullback by the forces, the Indian government may be preparing to accept the expansive Chinese claim line articulated by Premier Zhouenlai in his November 7, 1959 letter which Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru roundly rejected. This Chinese line was to protect the Tibet-Xinjiang Highway the PLA had completed by 1957, which cut through the northern part of Indian Aksai Chin, with the additional territory sought as buffer.

Q.5: About ten days after India occupied the Kailash Range within the areas held by it, the Foreign Ministers’ of India and China reportedly met in Moscow on the Chinese request. It is believed that the Indian Foreign Minister Jaishankar and his counterpart had arrived at an agreement about the broad terms of disengagement. Is this perception correct and what are your views on this?

A: Not sure what agreement Jaishankar hammered out with Wang Yi in Moscow. But it certainly did not achieve then, or in subsequent meetings at various bilateral civilian and military levels, what he repeatedly and publicly identified as the Modi government’s priority – “restoration of status quo ante”.

Q.6: There is a perception in the Indian army that the Ministry of External affairs is always ready to give up any military advantage it has obtained where China is concerned, but does not require the army to back down vis a vis Pakistan. It leaves the Indian army weaker in future discussions with China?

A: This may be the case because of higher political direction of Pakistan policy by the PMO whereas in the case of China, it is usually left to the China Study Group (CSG) and MEA to cull the options and even choose one. Except the CSG is made up of Mandarin-speaking diplomats, intelligence officers, and the like and has long distinguished itself as a den of China appeasers.

Q.7: You talk about how India should have adopted a more proactive approach against Beijing such as having cleared the Y-junction by use of force and counter-blockading the PLA in Depsang. But how will it work when the Chinese army is effective in the use of force?

A: The Indian government and army have to decide whether, because they fear tensions escalating into hostilities owing to the Indian reaction, they are willing to let China have its way. If sticking by India’s traditional claims of the LAC in eastern Ladakh and elsewhere is important, then it is time the army made a stand. Its Special Forces acting covertly should be ordered to vacate the PLA blockade and, to give Beijing pause. Simultaneously should be announced the deployment of the N-warheaded 700 km-range Agni-1 medium range missile units to the theatre. All military actions have risk, but being institutionally risk averse has not served the country’s interest and has earned India the reputation of being a country that can be pushed around by China. It has hurt India’s regional and international standing. Time to change that image with some decisive action.

Q. 8: Why has China refused to discuss Hot Springs, Gogra and Depsang? What kind of bargaining power can we now hope to exert to get the Chinese to move out of these three places?

A: Realistically-speaking, India has no leverage to compel the PLA to end its blockade except to signal its willingness to escalate matters, whatever the cost, which Delhi seems loath to do.

Q. 9: Has this happened given that the Indian army is the second largest military force in the world with 1.4 million active military personnel? Would you attribute this to a lack of up to date fighting equipment, ammunition, or logistical support or is it a lack of political will? Surely, we are better prepared than in 1962?

A: The real Indian weakness is not due to any shortfall in deployable military power or even the shortages but in the lack of political will and gumption.  

Q.10: What is the fall out of this going to be on our eastern borders between Ladakh and Arunachal Pradesh?

A: None, if we keep our proverbial powder dry! Unless the developments in Ladakh are taken by the army to mean that the government will countenance territorial losses in the northeast as well.

Q.11: What has India done to secure Doklam if China forces Bhutan to vacate its claims on that area?

A: The Indian government has successfully encouraged Thimpu to stand its ground, and the Bhutanese government has complied and rejected Chinese claims on a large part of what is its ecologically protected national park area.

Q.12: What lessons has India learnt from Armenia’s recent defeat and what is India going to do to counter what Pakistan and China are doing to follow the tactics and strategies used by Azerbaijan to defeat Armenia with ease?

A: No real lessons other than this was the first instance of extensive use of armed drones in warfare (by Aizerbaijan against Nagorno-Karabak) and alerts India to what drone warfare may look like and the possibility of the PLA using them on the LAC.

About Bharat Karnad

Senior Fellow in National Security Studies at the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, he was Member of the (1st) National Security Advisory Board and the Nuclear Doctrine-drafting Group, and author, among other books of, 'Nuclear Weapons and Indian Security: The Realist Foundations of Strategy', 'India's Nuclear Policy' and most recently, 'Why India is Not a Great Power (Yet)'. Educated at the University of California (undergrad and grad), he was Visiting Scholar at Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, the Shanghai Institutes of International Studies, and Henry L. Stimson Center, Washington, DC.
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46 Responses to Disengagement in Ladakh? India loses to China — substantively and symbolically

  1. Joydeep Sircar says:

    A searing indictment of our deep-rooted refusal to confront Chinese aggression. No amount of videos of Chinese tanks rolling back will make up for the effective loss of territory. And on top of that we are opening up FDI to the Chinese as a reward for good behaviour!

  2. San Mann says:

    Prof Karnad,
    I request you to comment on the latest announcement that Xi Jinping will be invited to come to India this year, to attend the BRICS Summit

    I, for one, am very unhappy Xi Jinping would come to India while his hands are dripping with the blood of our jawans. Our jawans matter to us, and we cannot gloss over their deaths by quickly shaking hands with those who murder them. Such moral gymnastics are unacceptable. Reminds me of when Musharraf visited India not long after his Kargil ambush on us. People tell me that we’re now doing this BRICS move because we want to keep equal distance between USA and China, since Biden is now less supportive of India. If we need to move farther from USA and closer to China, then we should focus on getting American Big Tech Social Media banned/regulated around the world, since their social media do represent a common threat to us both. China has already banned American Big Tech Social Media, and we Indians must do the same too. I think that should be the main focus of any international cooperation between India and China. The bonus would be that it will hurt Biden personally more than his country, because American Big Tech Social Media helped to rig US elections in his favour. If anything, we would be applauded by many Americans who feel politically disenfranchised, stifled and discriminated against by Big Tech.

  3. Amit says:

    Wars have consequences Sir. India lost the war in 1962, and along with it Aksai Chin and it’s claim over Sirijap fort. To claim it back, India will have to wage war with China. Even in Depsang plains military action can lead to war though India’s claim there holds more water. Is it wise to wage war with China given India’s sorry state of defence capabilitiess? Wars are unpredictable. While it is possible that India surprises China and massively diminishes it, the same can happen to India, after a lot of mutual damage. Is it worth the damage?

    • Gaurav Tyagi says:

      @Amit, going by your logic there’s no need to maintain an army, air-force and Navy. Imagine the financial savings for the country.

      Too much glorification of the armed forces by BJP has resulted in the top leadership of the armed forces becoming politicized. They don’t wish to fight any war.

      Just keep handing a list of weapon purchases to the government for getting “battle ready”.

      Get huge kickbacks from the foreign companies in the process. Government as well as Army both are happy.

      Issuance of big/macho statements periodically are enough to keep the public happy.

      • San Mann says:

        Tyagi, why do you keep focusing on BJP-this-BJP-that? You only show yourself to be some kind of petty partisan. Why are you just making random unsubstantiated claims about “politicization of armed forces” which have nothing to do with confronting the Chinese? It seems your goal is to diminish our armed forces, just to take potshots at your real enemy – which is the BJP, not China. Only a Jaichand will fail to back his own state in a confrontation with an enemy power. You’re saying more about yourself than anything.

      • Gaurav Tyagi says:

        Hey you San Mann or whatever you are, first have the guts to post messages with your own name rather than some pseudo nomenclature.

        I am not taking any potshots at anyone. I am just stating the facts. You on the contrary are sounding like a typical Modi toady.

        How difficult is it to understand that things are inter-linked. A crook and liar, who lies about his educational qualifications, marital status (basic stuff) do you expect him to confront the real enemy?

        The aforesaid point of mine is proved by Modi lying with his famous, “naa koii ghussa haii……” blatant lie to the nation.

        Politicization of the armed forces is clearly evident by looking at various army generals blah blah bravado statements in the media.

        Indian army as well as political leadership has embarrassed the nation globally by not acting tough on China.

        How did China intruded so much into the Indian land? What were the Indian forces at the LAC doing in April?

        Mind your tongue before calling me names like Jaichand. Constructive criticism is much better than blind worship of any individual or institution.

      • Sunil Kumar says:

        San Mann@,
        Flogging Nehru for their sins cannot absolve BJP/Modi ji. In recent past, Gen Rawat and ACM(R) Dhonoa have made rather political statements which were best avoided. Buying just two squadrons of Rafales, killing MMRCA and then re-floating MMRCA 2.0, ham-handedly supporting Tejas/AMCA, focusing on CI ops at the cost of war-fighting, and more are BJP’s acts of commission and omissions. After Dhoklam, if we are not prepared for China, it is BJP’s fault. Defense forces are not for stuttering in macho costumes but for defending sovereignty and territorial integrity of the nation. If Modi ji thinks he can scare away China by thumping his 56 inch chest, it is time to get a DD bra for it. May be the sex appeal will do the trick.

      • San Mann says:

        Tyagi, you only seem to reserve your criticisms for Modi, while keeping mum on the conspicuously bad track record of Congress & the Left for national defense. Your partisanship amounts to trying to portray Lefties as being better on national defense than nationalists. Nope, the reality is that nationalists are always better on national defense. Anything you can fault Modi & BJP on, would have been handled far worse by Congress & Left.

        Moreover, I notice you can’t even stick to the topic of national defense, and want to bring in any other topic where you can bash Modi. This tells me that your main topic is Modi, and not national defense. This is a defense forum, so stick to the topic of national defense, not your personal feuding with Modi over any old issue.

      • Salsin says:

        @San Mann
        “Anything you can fault Modi & BJP on, would have been handled far worse by Congress & Left.”

        Lol! You are bleating like a bhakt. The thing is, some other government would have ensured that such a sorry situation did not even arise. Remember revoking 370, and “we will get back Aksai Chin”?

        China taught your kind a lesson, which will of course be quickly forgotten. That is the hallmark of the bhakts… that is, to live and NEVER learn!!

      • San Mann says:

        @ Salsin,
        Why do you harp on any small rhetorical statement, instead of looking at ideological principles first? Schoolkid-taunts about “56 inch chest”, “where’s my 20 crore cheque from black money?”, “demonetization”, etc. just trying to latch small things. Nobody cares about them. The wider ideological positions of BJP are far more sound than Congress and others, whose ideological positions are garbage.

  4. Vikrant says:

    It is no longer sufficient to explain the GOI’s inaction with a simplified analysis. If the current dispensation, with massive political capital and a relatively robust foreign policy posture, can not stand up to China then no one can. It is, therefore, incumbent upon strategists to work out solutions for the roadblocks and bottlenecks that are standing in the way of robust foreign policy against China, or for that matter US. You, so far, have pointed to one roadblock – appeasers at the CSG, how can we get rid of them and what should be done to flood that zone with China hawks.

    The desperation of GOI to acquiece to the current drawdown deal, and its general diffidence, can be explained with multiple factors: 1) Having surrounded by the Chinese at the border, and US regime change operatives, with domestic help, implementing color revolution playbook at home in congruence with the Big Tech, GOI wants to ease off tension at one end. 2) Dysfunctional monthly election cycle model leaving very little room for dynamic foreign policy, especially when the politicians have to fight for their survival every month. Strategists must force GOI to conduct all the elections at once in every five year, so that all the attention could be focused on governing. 3) Business(political donor) class joined at the hip with the CCP, guiding the policy away from confrontation and towards capitulation so that their profit margins, drawn from subsidized cheap Chinese labor, remains untouched. Therefore, Decoupling from China has to be a priority. 4) Bloated, obese and lazy military living on the foreign fed diet finding itself unprepared for a sustained battle with an opponent who produces its own diet, and therefore isn’t dependent on others, and can fight protracted battle whenever it wants, resulting in the narrowing of options for the political class. 5) Compromised elites.

    Xi’s China is different than Zhou Enlai’s. Nehru didn’t hold his own against a poorer and weaker China, besides rejecting the Chinese claim he failed to evict feeble and frail China out of Aksai chin and Tibet. And now we are faced with the fruits of his failure.

    Modi is no genius either, the fact that he was bleating off about Baluchistan from the ramparts of Red fort rather than liberating Baluchistan quietly without taking any ownership of the matter, tells you all about his strategic planning, not to mention his lack of economic realism and the weapons importing spree he engaged in.

  5. Sankar says:

    Excellent interview, perhaps only a bit understated. I wonder whether the BJP-controlled media will circulate it widely in the national interest for orienting the general public about the grave situation developing on the northern border and India’s subserviency to China. What is going on for decades is the Chinese invasion by stealth without firing a shot and India capitulating on her sovereignty.

    The points raised here succinctly bare open the complete bankruptcy of India’s foreign policy and the cowardice of Hindu Modi Raj including the Armed Forces. Chief of defense Gen Rawat has gone silent after talking loud for a while on preparing for a two-front war. And what is the benefit of buying expensive war-fighting equipment, e.g. Rafael, if you are not going to use it? Mothballing such machines will simply render them obsolete in a few years.

    You do not need a super-duper military arsenal to defend your sovereign territory, especially in the mountains to stand up to the invader. Remember tiny Vietnam stood up to China in the 1980s and taught it a lesson when China invaded?

    If Indira Gandhi were at the helm now, China would have never dared to undertake this military aggression. It brings in mind the opinion expressed by the economist Amartya Sen NL in a different context before Modi came to power in 2014, that Modi is going to be a disaster for the Indian State.

  6. Gaurav Tyagi says:

    San Mann, you are a typical Modi Bhakt. Congress has been decimated badly in 2014. The last seven years, it’s Modi and BJP in power with absolute majority.

    The buck stops with Modi because although Indian President is the Supreme Commander of the Indian armed forces yet, it’s the Prime Minister, who has all the real powers. President in India is just a ceremonial post.

    This is the typical argument of BJP fan club. The fact that someone criticize the present regime. He is quickly branded as a Congressi/Leftist.

    Btw, I am not a fan of Congress or the left as well but they are not holding power at the centre. So, Modi cannot shun his responsibilities by invoking Congress all the time.

    It’s a defense related forum but issues are inter-linked. Only you are getting “pain in your stomach” regarding my valid criticism of Modi. It shows your true political colors.

    Forget about the Indian land captured by China since May 2020. Ask your “Pradhaan Drameybaaz” to recognize Taiwan as an independent nation. Let’s see how much guts he has.

    • San Mann says:

      Tyagi, Your talking points are all the same as Congress. Politicization of the armed forces is nonsense. And then you bring in Metros & Kerala, etc, which is totally unrelated to defense. The fact that you have nothing positive to say about the current govt tells me something about your partisanship. I, on the other hand, am willing to criticize the govt where I feel it’s due, while giving them credit where I feel it’s due. I’m unhappy with the govt’s move to invite Xi Jinping to BRICS Summit, while his hands are fresh with the blood of our soldiers. And if Modi dares to hug Xi, I will denounce him without hesitation or reservation. If a nationalist fails, then the solution is more nationalism.

      • Gaurav Tyagi says:

        San Mann, you are just beating around the bush. The fact that Modi gave in to Chinese aggression without any fightback reveals that he is a pseudo nationalist coward.

        How can anyone even call this BJP clowns nationalists? They didn’t contribute anything in the Indian freedom struggle.

        And for your kind information, I don’t even consider Gandhi, Nehru and Congress as freedom fighters. They were British agents.

        Congress party in India was founded by A.O. Hume, a Britisher.

        The real freedom fighters of India were guys like Bhagat Singh, Chandrasekhar Azad, Rajguru, Sukhdev etc. They were nationalists. Subhas Chandra Bose was also a nice man with national interest as his foremost priority.

        Modi making a statue of Patel, what an irony considering that Patel banned RSS on a couple of occasions, when he was the Home Minister of India.

        You are not the moderator of this site hence you have no right to say what I post or not.

        I don’t give a damn whether it hurts your sensibilities. Facts will remain facts

        I am highlighting the truth to prove that the Indian Prime Minister is a serial liar and hasn’t accomplished anything meaningful in his seven year regime till now.

        The nation cannot expect him to stand up to the Chinese.

        He will invite Xi Jinping for the BRICS summit and hug him in his “gay” style and proclaim “sabb changaa sii”. The same statement which he made regarding the Coronavirus situation in India.

      • Salsin says:

        “If a nationalist fails, then the solution is more nationalism.”

        Lol! More nationalism?!

        This reminds of a saying by… well, somebody.

        “Only an IDIOT keeps repeating the same mistakes, while expecting a different result.”

        You know what that makes you, right?

      • It was Einstein, incidentally, who defined madness as doing the same thing and expecting a different result.

      • San Mann says:

        @ Salsin,
        Your replies are stupid. National security should always be viewed from a nationalist perspective. Those like you offer no alternatives – or else you repeat the same tired old arguments of appeasement. That makes you the idiot, not me.

  7. Gaurav Tyagi says:

    @Vikrant- This is with reference to the following statement of yours;

    “You so far, have pointed to one roadblock – appeasers at the CSG, how can we get rid of them and what should be done to flood that zone with China hawks”.

    Unfortunately, it’s not possible to get rid of China appeasers. You know why?

    I live in China. The country is mushrooming with “think tanks” these days.

    They are forever on the prowl for any/every foreigner. The usual questions are; do you have friends, working for the government? When are you visiting your country the next time? etc.

    The brief of these think tanks is to befriend foreigners living in China and through them get to know politicians, bureaucrats in key positions in their countries.

    They are then offered free (sponsored) trips to China and provided lavish gifts.

    The compromised officials/politicians do Chinese bidding in their respective countries.

    In case of India, I was told that many of our politicians, professors, bureaucrats are already on the Chinese payroll.

    To avoid suspicion, China has even started inviting them over (sponsored trips again) to third countries.

    The main task of the aforesaid group of Indians is to pass on confidential government information to the Chinese and spread the fear of Chinese in the Indian society and media.

    They write articles favoring dialogue with the Chinese, which we all know will accomplish nothing. Many of our so called nationalists are part of the aforesaid group.

    • Anon says:

      We have Brookings to think for us. Sometimes it looks the entire country is for sale and we exist just to serve US and Chinese intrest there is just no Indian interest. US uses visa carrot for babus , military leaders.India still looks like a colony just the methods are more subtle and abstracted.India runs on steroid of past glory since the present and future looks bleak.

  8. krishna soni says:

    Respected Sir@Professor Karnad Turkey,Pak and OIC raises anti-Indian voices at UNHRC on Kashmir issue, in the recent years we have seen Erdogan Turkey becoming a headache for India constantly raising anti-Indian voices through various platform GOI too reacted by developing close ties with Greece,Cyprus and Armenia. Is developing an INDIA-GREECE-ARMENIA military alliance is in the benefit for India to counter the Pak-Turkey axis,it would help increase India’s role to the status of a global player in geopolitics than a regional player.I hope for your wonderful analysis on the topic.

    • Salsin says:

      Greece is an economic basket case, and Armenia just got a strong bitch slappin’ recently. You think an alliance with these losers will… “it would help increase India’s role to the status of a global player in geopolitics than a regional player.”


  9. Sankar says:

    @Professor Karnad:
    In the context of your interview it occurs to me that every nation-state member of the United Nations must register with the UN authorities the extent of its sovereign territory – there has been only one exception made (Israel) .
    If I am correct, what was the map GOI had submitted when it first became a member of the UN – presumably it included the entire State of Maharajah’s Kashmir including Aksai Chin?
    I note, that a dispute arose in 1949-50 over J&K due to Pakistani aggression, so there lies a file in the UN on that pocket of India’s landmass as yet to be settled with the UN.

    But then there is no dispute in the UN registered on Ladakh ‘s eastern-side boundary with erstwhile Tibet (Nehru’s suzernity?). Hence, Modi-Rajnath-Jaishankar need to be be cornered by the opposition in the Delhi parliament when they claim that there has been no loss of Indian sovereign territory in Ladakh (Khurank Fort, Depsang etc as you have pointed out).

    If my conclusion is correct, Modi as the PM has openly misled the nation on recent events in Ladakh, a point that needs to be fully publicized through the national media.

    Of course, there could be a catch since Vajpayee Govt gave in writing to China that Tibet belonged to China. Where did he draw the boundary of India with Tibet? In any case, who are the bloody Indians to declare that Tibet is a part of China – it is for the Tibetans to determine that?

    Could you please give your opinion on this critical issue of Indian sovereignty, how the present stake-holders in Delhi have surrendered it?

    • ~!@#$%^&*()_+ says:

      Sankar@ — Sorry but 2020 losses to China do not amount to ‘misleading the nation’.
      There is enough material in open source for everybody’s benefit and people can decide for themselves.
      Please try to be accurate – your audience will understand even if you do not actually achieve accuracy but are seen to be making an honest attempt.
      Misleading would be when a leader starts celebrating a win in a half-war to hide 500 deaths in a botched up operation of running to the borders. An operation on which the had staked his claim to deshbhakti.
      Misleading is when a leader hides the fact that more soldiers are lost to ‘accidents’ during a half hearted surgical strike because the elections are coming up.

      • Sankar says:

        Of course, it does – openly declaring to international news that no Indian sovereign territory has been lost is more than “misleading” the nation, to say the least. Keep your definition of the term “mislead” to yourself.

        What is going on is far worse than “Hindi-Chini Bhai Bhai”, if you have read India’s history of 1950s (I am assuming that you are an Indian). The entire landmass Depsang, Mount Kailash and so on was part of Maharajah’s Kashmir now under Chinese occupation. You are falsifying history by denying that China invaded Tibet in 1948-49(?), and over decades and has been consolidating her grip by stealth, step by step. And this Modi Raj has played into the hands of China.

  10. Gaurav Tyagi says:


    India has now withdrawn from these heights as per the agreement reached with the Chinese.

    The narcissistically minded leadership is busy in singling self glorifying songs while losing land to China and its image globally.

    • Sankar says:

      “… while losing land …” – really?
      I would have thought this is surrendering Indian sovereignty to China – to say the least, “slavery mindset”.

      I wonder now how low this Hindu Modi Raj could stoop down to foreign invaders as it has happened in history again and again over a Millenium in India’s past history, to sacrifice India’s hard-won independence for the “age of development”. Amazingly, even the Indian military has succumbed and the Hindu Bhaktas are mum.

      • Gaurav Tyagi says:

        Hindu Bhakts are not mum. They are forever defending the ‘chosen one’.

        They are still invoking Nehru & Congress to justify the present regime’s abject surrender to China.

  11. ~!@#$%^&*()_+ says:

    @Gaurav Tyagi says:
    February 23, 2021 at 11:54 pm
    Mind your tongue before calling me names like Jaichand. Constructive criticism is much better than blind worship of any individual or institution.

    Note – Jaichand died for the lands of his forefathers and his successor carried on the struggle and so did the later dynasties that trace themselves to Jaichand’s lineage. It is kalyug and you can expect to be lured with false histories especially by those harboring unbridled ambitions/emotions.

    • Gaurav Tyagi says:

      “Jaya-chandra (IAST: Jayacandra, r. c. 1170–1194 CE) was a king from the Gahadavala dynasty of northern India. He is also known as Jayachchandra (IAST: Jayaccandra) in inscriptions, and Jaichand in vernacular legends. He ruled the Antarvedi country in the Gangetic plains, including the important cities of Kanyakubja and Varanasi. His territory included much of the present-day eastern Uttar Pradesh and some parts of western Bihar. The last powerful king of his dynasty, he was defeated and killed in 1194 CE, in a fight against a Ghurid army led by Qutb al-Din Aibak.

      A fictional account of Jayachandra (as Jaichand) occurs in the medieval legendary text Prithviraj Raso. According to this account, he was a rival of another Indian king, Prithviraj Chauhan. His daughter Samyukta eloped with Prithviraj against his wishes, and he allied with the foreign Ghurids to ensure Prithviraj’s downfall. Although this account is historically inaccurate, the name “Jaichand” became synonymous with the word “traitor” in folklore of northern India because of this legend”

      My response to San Mann was due to him referring to me as a traitor.

      I don’t know how come these BJP folks are considered nationalists? They didn’t participate in India’s struggle for independence.

      Just by chanting slogans and branding others, who don’t agree to their ideology they have become ‘self proclaimed nationalists’

      I was called a “Vibishaan” by Sudhir Chaudhary of Zee News, DNA program after the following article written by me was picked up widely by the Indian media;


      It’s been more than four years since, I wrote the aforesaid. Inspite of all the anti China sentiment in India and the tensions at the border. These are the hard facts;


      I wonder what our so called nationalists have to say about it.

      • ~!@#$%^&*()_+ says:

        Gaurav Tyagi@ –Vibhishan is the one for whom the entire kingdom got spared. Otherwise in the Ramayan, the expectation had already been set by the emissary sent by Ram. The very fact that Jaichandra and Vibhishan are invoked to swear at opponents establishes the absolute limits of loyalty to the local traditions and exposes fully the split-loyalties of your opponents. Feel free to treat your opponent with what he deserves.No worthwhile nationalist would like to die in captivity or proffer dishonest reasons for hanging onto his life. The traditions are well followed even to this day when scores have given up their lives in the Farmer Protests.

  12. Anon says:

    India is anyways bound to lose as we dont have structures policies ,strategy, political will developing this things takes years china has invested its time in this and believes in running 100 years marathon.Indian babus who are the real power centres think along the line of having strong economy than building armed forces and then they have the argument ready that india should focus on pulling its people out of poverty.This issues you have highlighted in your books and articles.Even NDA,IMA needs reforms something similiar on lines Germany had done like German general staff by the time we make and implement this reforms china would be on some other level with its focus on AI,bio genetic weapons ,quantum comms this cant be imported also and have to be built in house.Modi was supposed to be the outsider to fix this but irony is he ended up strengthening this very outdated systems .The sad thing is as time passes it would be difficult to catch up with china .Goi is okay playing second fiddle and be chowkidar than be the central pivotal power of asia the lack of will and low ambition is the problem which really has no solution.Sad state of affairs!


    Another very strong opinion by Mr. Karnad. I believe our throwing out of Article 370 actually weakened India’s claim to Ladakh. The only claim we have towards Ladakh is because the erstwhile state of J&K once conquering that piece of territory from the then Tibbetan ruler , Dalai Lama.

    The destruction of article 370 means that the erstwhile state of J&K does not exist anymore and therefore all it’s previous claims to Ladakh also are completely irrelevant.

    So by doing away with article 370 we have actually given China a golden opportunity to lay claim on Ladakh which now we will find difficult to reverse.

    I would love your views on the same.

    • Anon says:

      Thats the only right thing i believe govt has done till today.Chinese would have anyways claimed it.It’s not the question of claims and counter claims its whether you can back your claims with actions using your hard power.The PLA had anyways plans to take on India to establish itself as the dominat power in the region.

      • Sankar says:

        Anon@ — I fail to see the “right thing” as you assess the entire political development re Art 370. Ladakh has been excised from the past J&K and made a Union Territory, in other words directly administered by the Central Government sitting in Delhi. But, by all accounts, there is Chinese aggression on parts of Ladakh. The Indian State has lost enormous chunks of its sovereign Ladakhi territory to China (more than 1000sq km), the Army has given up Mount Kailash and loath to defend this part of eastern Ladakh. In fact, the Army is stepping backwards by creation of buffer-zones all over Ladakh instead of defending this Union Territory. PLA has rendered Ladakh is an easy game for it. And the power holders in Delhi Modi & Co are reconciled to this. Isn’t this a farcical situation for the Indian nation-state? What is the “right thing” here?

  14. Gaurav Tyagi says:

    @San Mann- The following is an excerpt from the above article by Professor Karnad;

    “The real Indian weakness is not due to any shortfall in deployable military power or even the shortages but in the lack of political will and gumption”

    You and other fans are better suited in the discussion forums of Republic, Zee or India TV.

    The buck stops at the PMO. Don’t be under a false illusion or try to create a fake narrative that Modi wasn’t aware of Chinese build up at LOC during March-April 2020.

    The simple fact is he got scared by the Chinese and didn’t instruct the Indian army to act tough against the Chinese aggression.

    Your singing praises to such a hypocrite, narcissistic character won’t change the opinion of the sane readers on this forum.

  15. Pingback: Bharat Karnad : MEA Babus Preparing To Accept 1959 Chinese Claims (Rejected By Nehru) | INDIAN LIBERTY REPORT

  16. Gaurav Tyagi says:

    Professor Karnad, I am sorry to bring to your notice an error.

    This article of yours has 36 replies till now but the count at the end of the composition is reflecting 37.

  17. Gaurav Tyagi says:

    Alright Sir, btw, completely off the topic but a very interesting article as per my 1 cent opinion;


    Would love to read your thoughts on the aforesaid.

  18. bharat kumar says:

    Does this agreement mean we finally arm the phillipines?
    Or are there any more formal obligations left??

    • A more detailed weapon-related agreement has to follow. Hope this part is speeded up.

    • Sankar says:

      All missiles are supersonic, at least 3-5 Mach. I do not understand the present hype of “hypersonic” – in the category 9 Mach+ !!!
      Very little information in the public domain about hypersonic of its advantage over supersonic. Hypersonic will have the technical drawback for generating large Doppler-shift compared to supersonic, and easier detectability on radar receivers. Also, the seeker-head on hypersonic will have less time for its target detection software and hence can be less accurate in its lethality- it could be better defeated by a manoevering target than for the supersonic. What about the range for hypersonic compared with supersonic? Anyway, the advantage for hypersonic not clearly spelled out in the open by militaries.

      • ~!@#$%^&*()_+ says:

        Think of it like this.
        Be it a Cheetah chasing a Gazelle or an AIM-120 head on against a Su-30. The one doing the interception must be more agile and also move faster (sporting only one attribute will not work). And despite that the result will be very far from a 100% interception ergo salvos attacks will cause the interceptions to fail meaningfully.
        The problem of doppler-shift requires a radial velocity to exist in the first place. For example an Arleigh Burke defending a Carrier at some distance. But what if the Arleigh Bruke’s radar itself is the target. One can choose putting in multiple Arleigh Bruke or multiple S-400s in the same battle space to defend each other but that would spoil the exchange ratios and become too costly by any benchmark. It is always easier and cheaper to attack.
        Processing times for target data generation has not been a challenge since long. Since at least Pershing-2, which had an active radar on a Mach 8 entry vehicle. And the target also cannot maneuver fast enough 80 kmph for any military vehicle/ship vs.10000 kmph for the hypersonic missiles. And to top it all the hypersonic missile will not lose any acceleration but the military target certainly will after the first maneuver itself.
        Currently the best maneuvering targets that can be intercepted are simulated non-salvo attacks by GQM-163_Coyote (Maximum speed Mach 3.0-4.0 at 5,000-55,000ft, Mach 2.6 at 30-15ft [2])

  19. Sankar says:

    ” The problem of doppler-shift requires a radial velocity to exist in the first place…” – utter rubbish!

    Doppler shift is due to relative velocity between the two objects – here the receiver (radar set) and the missile (hypersonic). Obviously, the hypersonic will cause much larger shift than the supersonic.
    The rest of the post speaks for itself – science and technology do not work on imagination, but on fundamental principles of physics, maths and hardware engineering in this case.

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